I am not sure how you top Day 2 so I have scheduled today as somewhat of a rest day. Rest days are also good days for reflection and fine tuning and I think this will be important as I progress to a more radiant life. I awoke this morning at 3am again, rolled over and tried to quieten my mind and get back to sleep which i eventually did. I awoke at 4.59am a little tired I have to admit from yesterday's adventure. Not to mention a little sore with my internal organs having been rearranged by driving for most of the day on very rocky roads which also saw me carrying a very full bladder the whole day, it was quite a physical experience. I am not sure how well my darling wife would have gone with her pea size bladder and Popsy would have definitely struggled with his kidneys. So I awoke to my now daily ritual of meditating on the heart of the rose, by chance there are fresh roses in my room (Bec would say that is a sign!) and so i meditate by trying to calm my mind and just focus on the natural beauty of the rose. Needless to say that I am not all that successful at this activity but everything takes time. After what seems like an eternity which is probably more like 3-4 minutes I put the rose back and begin meditating on my breathing. Again just trying to calm my mind and allow only positive thoughts in but let them pass through rather than attach. On Day 1 when I did this exercise an image came into my head. It was so clear. I was back in my living room with Bec and the kids and we were all dancing. I could hear the music, each of us were doing our own moves and I was too. Tears started rolling down my cheeks, it was a very powerful moment for me and it was so visually clear in my head. I was able to just sit in the moment looking around the room at Bec and then each of the kids. Indy with her groovy dancing, Maggie wiggling her little Razzie but and Gussy the star of the show doing his crazy moves. Big mama was clapping and clicking and I was just dancing with no level of being self conscious, it was very moving. It reminded me of the episode I had when I did the journey counselling session with Jan, where I apparently went into and then out of the 'hole' it was very powerful.
This morning though I was struggling a bit but sought to just focus on my breathing and did okay. I rolled over and grabbed my phone to check the time and saw the time and literally jumped out of bed. Up until last night for some reason my phone had set itself to an hour past the actual time, so 6am was actually 5am, I am sure you get the picture. Anyway this morning my phone said 5.59am and I thought great 5am. i had just realised that I had slept in, and jumped to action. My morning ritual includes running as the sun comes up, I pulled back the blind and it was very light outside, grabbed my gear and headed out to the park for my morning run somewhat disappointed in myself this morning. I did however treat myself with some compassion and saw it as all part of the journey as well as blaming it at least partly on the jetlag finally kicking in.
The spirit of physicality is so important to me. When I don't have it my mind takes over and this is never good for me. Physical activity generates for me so many positive thoughts and is for me the most powerful form of meditation. It is the part of the 21 day challenge that is working incredibly well. As I reflect on the first 3 days I think there are already some major changes I can feel. When I was talking with Di on Day 1 and sharing with her what this all meant for me from a work perspective the energy was pouring out of me, I felt like I was floating with raw energy just bursting out of me, it was very cool. I am starting to get my stomach back, which had deserted me for the past couple of months, which is always a good sign for me. I am certainly living more in each moment and yesterday was testament to that. Whilst on the drive I did feel like i was going to struggle to become more radiant thinking back to some real challenges I will face when i return home, however once I arrived and was with the staff and kids of Emali radiant living just burst back through. I was able though to savour the moment and each moment as they happened. This is not like me, usually I am on to the next thing, but yesterday I just took it all in, took my time, thanked the universe for this very precious gift and the opportunity to serve and enjoyed every minute. I stopped myself in the moment, looked into the eyes of the kids, made an effort to be very present with everyone I was talking with, it felt great.
I also see little things changing like my demeanour with people. The pushy Indian man at the baggage rack who came and stood right in front of me, I would normally have interjected and almost pushed him out the way, this time I checked myself, felt the frustration, allowed it to pass and when my bag came calmly said excuse me and off I went. I made an effort yesterday to go in and shake the hand of the omelette chef who cooked my omelette. He was very chuffed and I walked out with almost a tear in my eye because this is something I would rarely do, I would think it but then get too embarrassed or find an excuse not to do it, it felt great. I am making more of an effort to sit in the moment with people and focus on them, be they the waiter, the colleague I am coaching or anyone I am meeting with. I am also trying to not judge or critique people and their behaviour. This one is proving challenging because my first instinct is to review behaviour of others against my values to determine what I feel about this and ultimately them. It is how I am programmed and I am now trying to reprogamme myself. I am doing ok but there is definitely still room for improvement.
Of most importance is my efforts to control my mind. My mind has always been a very complex, serious and even at times dark place where I spend most of my time. It is never silent and always processing. Over the past 5 years or so I have found the more difficult events and issues that I have faced have resulted in my mind becoming a predominantly negative force where I spend hours relentlessly reviewing past events or rehearsing conflict situations that could present in my life due to the poor relationships I might have with certain people. It is absolutely exhausting and is the critical element to a radiant life for me. Cultivating a garden in my mind that is filled with beautiful flowers and sunlight and opportunity. Taking back control of those 60,000 thoughts I have every day and use them to focus on my dharma, moving towards my lighthouse of purpose. It is only day 3 but I cannot tell you how much more energy this gives me, a lightness a feeling of great power. To spend hours every day thinking about Bec, the kids my family and also the kids I want to make life better for is a very powerful force and just so positive.
I often think of a scene in the movie 'coach carter' when the coach keeps asking one of his troubled players what his greatest fear is. The player who is the tough kid from a gang involved in crime and the like just doesn't get it and this keeps going on with the coach asking and the player responding with increasing frustration. At the end of the movie when the player has taken control of his life and turned his back on gang life etc the coach asks once more 'what is your greatest fear?' The player responds this time and recites our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate, our greatest fear is that we are powerful beyond all measure (etc etc. you may know the poem from which this comes) and I see this in me now. I am powerful beyond all measure but have not been tapping into that power. I have been restricting my power by allowing my mind to run free and build in toxins that were killing my energy. There were a couple of moments yesterday sitting in the car where I questioned my ability to see this new life through, the old me starting coming back into focus and it literally felt like I put on this incredibly heavy jacket with chains coming off it and the chains were connected to cement blocks. This morning my meditation when I was running was seeing myself moving forward out of the jacket and leaving it behind me, it was very empowering, I could physically feel this happening. I guess this is all my way of knowing that my old approach to life was only 3 days ago and this new way of living will take commitment, discipline and willpower, this is at the heart of the challenge.
I see this as unleashing myself. Being able to talk with Bec and my family like I talk in my head. I have so much more colour, definition and purpose in my head than when it comes out my mouth. I think about the conversation we all had at the mill about the India walk and I was so reserved, contained and even withdrawn. When really when I think about the walk my whole mind fills with colour and purpose, i want to get that out for others, particularly Bec to see and experience. I am sure that i will be a much more enjoyable person to be around as well as bring out in others some very positive responses. I can't wait, somewhat nervous but very excited.