Use it, dont waste it

My friend Louis shared a profound experience from his childhood. His mother bought him the most beautiful Adidas tennis shoes. They had the Adidas logo on each little nobble on the soles and the blue stripes against the white shoe was exquisite.

For him these shoes were so beautiful, he only walked on grass with them to save the nobbles. Once he got out of the car and stepped into a puddle of mud. He immediately took them of and cleaned those blue stripes till they shone again. Because he wanted to preserve the beauty of these shoes he seldom wore them. Then one day – they were to small.

I find this story full of the liberating truth of abundance.

When we are still enslaved in a mental map of scarcity, we tend to buy things that we like but, like Louis, we hoard them. Be honest – how many things are stuffed in boxes and closets that we never use? We have these beautiful set of plates, but only use them on high days to impress people. Or that expensive coat hanging in the back of the closet that we do not wear because there is no appropriate function on the calendar.

We should use them. That is what they are made for. We have to give our possessions the opportunity to be of value to us. If it breaks or is worn through, then they have served their purpose in life and we were blessed by that purpose.

Yet, we should also not waste our possessions. Waste shows a mental map of selfish consumption and disrespect. Showing respect towards your possessions exhibits an attitude of gratitude. By taking care of them, putting them away when they are not in use, we acknowledge the service they render to us. When we take care of our stuff, they take care of us.

You might think this is a bit to preachy. Well, consider this: The way you treat your possessions, reflects the way you treat yourself.

Because you believe in your own value, you take care of yourself and your stuff. Unfortunately, because of the undervaluation of yourself, you under evaluate the contribution you can make and therefore also the contribution of the tools with which to add value, your possessions.

So, please take note of the lesson of the Adidas shoes. Use them, before you outgrow them.


Sitting with yourself

I remember a story about a Khoi San tribe that had to be relocated. They were quite exited because they were going to a place that had more advantages for them. So for a few days they marched with vigor and excitement. Then one morning they just sat around. When the officials asked them why they were not going to march, they replied: “We are waiting for our souls to catch up with us.”

Beautiful is it not? I think a lot of us can associate with this story. Our day to day programs are a rush from one appointment to another, one task to be completed before the other can be started and all of them against a deadline. And someway along the line we lose touch with ourselves.

Yesterday I sat with myself for the most of the day. Giving my soul time to catch up with me.

At times it was difficult.Often  I had to stop my mind from reminding me of all the actions on the to do list. Those mental maps that drive us to be productive are very strong. I think it is because we link them to being valuable and worthy. I realized that it is an unnecessarily link. One that was most propably made for us by society. “If you do not performe, you are not valueable.”

It is a bit of a narcissistic societal norm, don’t you think. Basically it says: “As long as you can do thinks for me, you are valuable.”

The truth is we are valuable – full stop. Our value lies in who we are not in what we can do.

Sitting with ourselves acknowledges this primary law of the universe. Sitting with ourselves allows us to enjoy our own beauty. Yes we are beautiful.With our warts and all. The dark side in us in our life accentuates the light. Enjoy both. They are equals.

Only when we can be with ourselves can we start to add value to the world. Not by what we do, but by who we are when we do it.

So, give yourself permission to be yourself. You may sit and do nothing. Enjoy it.

Switch off the brain that wants to make you feel guilty. In fact be rebellious and do nothing in spite of the guilt and to do reminder that tries to hog your attention.

Just sit and let your soul catch up.