December 24, 2009

Be your highest self…

Posted in Between Us column, Relationships, Spirituality at 2:07 am by dinaheng

My parents have a small artificial Christmas tree that the grandkids assemble every year, depending on who’s around and tall enough to reach the top. This year, Emily, 8; Max, 6, and Mark, 5, took the honors.

As they decorated the tree with ornaments, they took note of a set of shiny red apples, each painted with the name of their mothers or an aunt. I don’t know which of my sisters decided to do that, but the hanging of the apples has become part of our family tradition.

As each apple is hung, the grandchild holding it calls out the name of the Eng sister, as if calling out the roll at school. The seven sisters are never all there at once, but I like to think we’re always there in spirit.

The holidays are wonderful times for gathering with those we love, expressing gratitude for all that we have, and remembering who we really are.

This year has been a tough one for most of us. The economy has hurt every industry, and where we’re headed still seems uncertain, making it more important than ever to focus on what’s really important in our lives.

So what is your vision for yourself? Do you know who you are, and what you aim to be? Not what you aim to do in life, but what you aim to BE.

We all want to reach goals, communicate better with others, feel secure, and make a difference in the world. To do any of this, we have to first know who we really are.

Too often, we look outside ourselves for the answer — we define who we are by the way others see us, by the things we own, by the titles we hold. But if we let outer things define  our identity, we’ll always be at the mercy of someone else’s judgment.

The only way to really own your life, and take control of it, is to take responsibility for it. You must own your dreams, your hopes and your ambitions, in order to give them life. You must also be honest about your fears, your faults and your mistakes, or you will sabotage your success with unrealistic expectations. It’s only when you own all of who you are that you can change what’s needed in order to achieve what you want.

If all you do is complain, or blame your lack of recognition on others, you’ll remain the victim of your own unhappiness. That is not the real you.

The real you is unlimited in its capacity to BE… to be generous to others… to be forgiving of those who have hurt you…. to be able to stand up for yourself without putting others down… to be open to new adventures…  to be who you were born to be.

Wonderful things are coming in the year ahead. Now is the time to stand in the center of possibility, and define what you want to be.

There’s an apple with your name on it, hanging on someone’s tree of gratitude. Wherever you are as 2009 winds down, know that you are being held in the Light, and that peace, love, and joy are yours. All you have to do is BE who you are.

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