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A friend once called me Matrix Eyes, as she claimed to think I saw the world in a very strange and unique way. I agree. I also know that writing helps me to find clarity, hence the “Detangling Of The Mind” writing series I have decided to play with. This is the first topic that has come to me, and it is on Success. I am so very grateful when I am given an idea or thought-wave that dives me into deeper contemplation, and therefore more depth in understanding a subject matter. The topic I am writing about today is one that I am particularly curious about to see its unraveling, as I feel that as it does so, there can only be more light shining into my mind, and therefore more peace into my heart. So thank you Muse, I appreciate your gift.

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Success is a very interesting word. So seemingly innocuous yet mysterious and charged, Success seems to require both the insight of intention, set at the beginning of any trodden path, as well as foresight for the result, the final golden carrot so to speak, dangling down to represent the fruit of one’s actions. Success to me is mysterious, not a solid object or reward as one might expect, because it can shape shift, assume different forms, wear exotic masks and even possibly,  take us away from that main path. Perhaps this is due to internal changes or perspectives. Perhaps this is caused by external forces.  Or even perhaps the goal itself -the SUCCESS- has been changed.

It always helps me, when trying to understand something, to begin with its definition. This is step one in the detangling of the mind.

The simple meaning of success without digging into the baggage of the many levels of its definition, is attaining one’s goals. I can easily rant on the ups and downs of this definition, especially in regards to… ”What if one does not have clearly defined goals?” The answer to this shines piercingly through the murky waters of unclarity. To want the golden carrot, to wake up each morning in search of success and yet not understanding what success really means, creates a whirlpool of doubt, misery, failed projects, disconnections and fear. So, thank you Muse in offering me this new perspective on Soul Purpose for I have realized that I, along with (I suppose) many folks, have been wrapped and shrouded in contradicting and overlapping layers of colors, textures and beliefs that all claim to be success. How confusing.

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First of all, I believe that there are many levels of success. A successful woman may very well be a wonderful cook, an amazing mom and yet suck at cleaning. She may have a luscious garden and friends that adore her, yet not be satisfied in the work she brings to the world. Is she successful? I suppose it is up to her to decide. How does she define success? Does she allow society to define her? Is it defined by each day, month or year?

 My Views Of Success

Taking the time to realize that I need to redefine what success means for me and my life helps me to understand that I have been blindly moving forward, trapped in the box of other peoples beliefs and expectations. I am not pointing any finger, I take absolute responsibility for my own ignorance, disorganization and lack of clarity. I have come to realize (thanks again Muse!) that it never served me to be fuzzy on this subject. I have to know what success means, to reach it and feel happy.

I just had a thought…What if my main purpose in life is just to become clear in my mind and actions, and to evolve and to enjoy myself? To give up the ‘necessity’ to be an Ayurvedic Doctor, an Accomplished Yogini, a Psychosomatic therapist, a Dancer, a Writer, a Whatever…and just live in a manner that suits me. That would be a riot. And if this is what I find to be successful, what a blessing it would be to know this, so I can relax and be free of all of this doubt and insecurity! If this is the case then this question that I have asked is a critical starting point for my own personal salvation. I have been stuck for years, not feeling content. An unsettled feeling in my gut and a sadness in my heart always leads me to question “What am I doing with my life? What can I be? What should I do? What job will bring me the most happiness and success?”

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My heart and my soul long for simplicity, but I have created complexity and confusion by strolling blindly forward, waves of emotions and desires pushing me to do this or let go of that. My lack of clarity swishes me into other people’s arms to support them, connect with their work, their dreams and their goals. This entrepreneurial entanglement regarding Self Worth and Work, Mine and Yours is not just a result of confusion, but also strange safety zones I have created for myself, as well as momentary breaks from trying to figure my success story out. I help others until I am clear. Wow. That brings me some freakin deep understanding! I also compare myself to others and rate myself as ‘better than” or “worse off” depending upon who I am hanging out with. If I take a moment to pause and breathe, I can appreciate all of these steps on my journey, and I have taken a lot of these steps. I can then recognizing the odd jobs and skills I have collected not as failures, but as stepping stones to my own heart’s desires. These stepping stones are not quite linear, but a spiral path of mini- successes that have brought me to where I am today. {Insert big sigh of relief here as I am thoroughly enjoying this clarity!!}

My Breakdown (or breaking apart) about what Success Means To Me:

Success to me is being able to feel happy and content.

Success to me is bringing something to completion.

Success to me is making advances in growing and evolving in my Self and in my Life.

Success to me is having breakthroughs (acknowledging, digesting, appreciating and moving on).

Success to me is having the time to take the assured steps, with patience, stability and clarity to reach my goals and the time and space to pause, and to recognize when I have reached them!

Success to me is being able to take care of myself and supporting my family in ways that feel good and having ample time to pursue my dreams (heart-led desires)..in a beauty-filled, art-full manner.

Success to me means having a vital body and a calm, clear and focused mind.

Success to me means doing what I love, seeing others doing what they love and supporting others doing what they love.

Success to me is telling my truth, my story, sharing wisdom and being heard.

Success is knowing who I am, being ok with who or what I am not, appreciating my uniqueness and standing up for what is best for me.

Success As Defined By Our Culture…(points palatable to me): 

Success is making money, making a living, or exceeding basic necessities and having money for joy and freedom.

Success is rising to the top, moving past limitations, becoming the best at something .

Success is improving or bringing betterment to people places and ideas.

Success is inspiring others…perhaps by being the person who belly laughs the most.

Success is power…and hopefully, the right use of power.

Success is a clear, sharp mind with innovative ideas that move humanity forward as a whole.

How Success Can Mislead Us:

Success comes in many shapes and forms. One person’s success can be another’s failure.

Success means inspiring others or rising to the top even when one is not happy inside.

Success is accomplishing the fruits of money, power, or {fill in the blank} for someone else, instead of working towards fulfilling your own life purpose and dreams.

Success is a one time thing, a big event of having attained! and each day working towards this sense of accomplishment while being unhappy or discontent that it hasn’t been reached yet.

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Ok. So detangling the thoughts in my mind and sorting out what Success means to me (or doesn’t mean to me) and to folks in my current society, have enabled me to fold very nicely, a clean laundry pile of what Success now means in my personal daily life.

Success is:

Fulfilling my Duties

So for example. My duties are to keep the house clean, drive my daughter from school to home to dance to home, pay the bills, cook, fill the car with gas ( Im only adding this here because I try to avoid it at all costs), gardening, lesson planning, marketing and bookkeeping my yoga classes, and manage our family band. These are my duties. On a daily or weekly basis, reflecting on whether I am successful in the maintenance of my family duties seems to shift from day to day.

This is ground level basic stuff…Earth chakra, root stuff. The dedication and devotion I place in fulfilling my family duties should be TOP SHELF PRIORITY, for it is this foundation that gives my man and I the freedom to be our creative selves, musicians and healing artists in life. Working on this 1st, not only pleases my ancestors, the Grandmothers (they sure do love a tidy home!), but gives me the muscle memory for structure, perseverance, and stability. Meeting deadlines, showing up on time, being prepared, while feeling balanced fills me with such a huge amount of accomplishment (can I say success?!) as long as I enjoy  the breathing room to really stretch out and enjoy the process of accomplishment. Balancing this drive with the breathing room is the tricky part and so I highlight it for more awareness. Its a delicate matter to observe the ‘sense of accomplishment’ attitude vs. the overdrive of type A-stressed out-crazy bitch.

Feeling content

The feeling of contentment is largely entwined with both remembrance and balance. What have I committed to? Do I have the time, appreciation and dedication to devote to my commitments? The balance of being able to maintain my commitments, and doing them well brings me content. The reflection of all I have done up to this point offers a connection in remembering the goals I have set and what I have achieved, which fills my heart with content. This contentment, or Santosha in Sanskrit, fills me with a sense of accomplishment and success.

Living Passionately

Doing what pleases me…living my passions…without having to worry about an end result, creates freedom and joy in my heart and a smoothness in my breath. So doing things such as dancing, singing, writing, teaching, healing, traveling and playing, fills me with gratitude, senses of accomplishment and purpose. A beautifully perfect example of success in my book.

The Four Flower Essences I wish to share now..are not one to help figure the question: “What am I supposed to do for a living, that pays me well, supports my heart’s desires and supports my family’s needs=Success?” Instead, they offer clarity, steadiness, boundaries, clear action and balanced retrospection to feel success as I have defined it.

Pomegranate: finding balance between one’s home/family and career

Sagebrush: resolving inner conflict around Soul Desire in the world= offering simplicity and discernment.

Oak: balancing strength and determination: not taking on more than one can handle

Cosmos: collecting ideas from the cosmic realms to organize them into clear words

The Sacred Pause IS the Golden Carrot

Ok. So this is the end of my musings for today. To feel successful, I must honor the time I set aside for work, fun, play and chores. I need to observe the levels of successes in my life, and honor the fact that each one takes a different amount of time, dedication and devotion. This leaves space to then acknowledge and appreciate what has been achieved. I have spent a good couple of hours dissecting success. Now it is time for a pause.

The sacred pause offers space to integrate and appreciate all that I have accomplished, including this writing.  It is I believe,  the golden carrot.  Dang. My Virgo-Sun-Self really needed this dissection and assimilation today. What freedom, clarity and timely relief. Success is what I make of it, and I have the power to define it for myself. Jai Ma.

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