Most of us are programmed not to look back, as the past is the past and we can’t change it, plus we’re afraid it will keep us stuck. However, by looking back we can see what can be learnt.
In my last post of the year 2019 I talked about foreseeing that the year 2020, ushering in the new decade, will be a special and transformative one. To prepare ourselves for what’s to come it can serve us well to look back, as it can help bring awareness to our looking forward. One lesson might be:
An Ending Always Brings a New Beginning
The most important lessons are those that inspire an expanded view on our today and tomorrows. For example, if I am suffering from going through an ending, knowing that this will always usher in a new beginning, we are more likely to endure the pain. We may even feel excited for the unfolding, even though we may not know what it is we are excited for.
Why Look Back?
As I look back on the second decade of the 21st Century, rather than the year 2019 only, it is natural to see some patterns.
Taking this larger view, everything from the deepest valleys of despair to the highest mountain tops look like mere bumps in the road; it’s all about perspective. And what I am really interested in, taking the bird’s eye view, is the winding path, which only in hindsight reveals its true direction.
So what do I see, scattered along that now left behind path? With my hands up I confess to a lot of outgrown beliefs and residual self-sabotaging patterns. At the time of living through this shedding, there was a lot of pain and emotional turmoil. Which makes the mind wonder, naturally, will there be a lot more of that to come? Will that kind of torture ever end? Well, there’s simply no way of knowing (no crystal ball to give me the answer), but I can look at what I have learned so far and can continue to shift my perspective about events.
Conclusion: With all of the confusing phases that I have passed through, the tears and the fears, it will be important to try to remain grounded – to feel well in my body and not to let my thoughts work me into a troubled state – whatever comes my way.
My Last Decade
Here’s some learning that I can make out looking back at the last decade. Some may apply to you too (or not):
I have experienced major shifts. The early years of the past decade were dedicated to the high flying corporate world, averaging some four flights per week. I was content (and blissfully unaware of my contribution to climate change – this issue was not a part of my consciousness). That was until, through various outer and inner events, I started to feel empty, despite having it all. With time, my busy running around chasing one appointment after the other in between conference calls seemed pointless. By the end of the decade and by the beginning of the new one (now!) I inhabited an altogether different reality, a welcome change. I don’t know where I am going, but I now I go somewhere.
Do welcome change!
Such transformations, as the one detailed above, tend to bring about a lot of anxiety. In the middle of living through major changes in our lives, no matter if we chose them, major growth spurts can feel like nothing but upheaval, and we might feel like we are losing our minds (perhaps not a bad thing, all in all).
In hindsight it seems it was all part of a bigger plan.
The starting point for 2020 is a very different one to when the year 2010 begun. And I’m excited to know that, again, my life will completely shift – for the better.
Looking at the specific difficulties, already by the year 2011 I had developed an acute fear of flying. This was a major disruptor to a life that I was otherwise pretty much “running on rails”. Eventually this fear developed from sitting in planes before take-off, terrified I’d crash, to feeling my entire life crashing down on me.
So what did I learn? I learned that when feeling pushed to do so, even making the most difficult of decisions will pay off. In my case, I ejected myself from my corporate life, only to regret it. Today I can say without a shred of hesitation that choosing the harder path based on the nudges of the soul, help will arrive. And the harder path, the one you know to be the right one in spite of it all, will lead to more blessings.
Don’t stay in your comfort zone when your inner voice tells you to get out of it!
One of the mountain peaks, the blessings for me in the past decade, was meeting Vijay in the Auroville forest, a spiritual community in the south of India. It was the year 2015, and with all the chaos of the first half of the decade, I was ripe and ready for my illusions to be pierced and deflated. Not to say that it was all smooth sailing. On the contrary, had I known how much I would suffer I might have stayed well clear – out of the forest – and within my comfort zone. I can deduce the learning that much has to remain concealed, or we might never embark on the most transformative life stages, even when they are beautifully laid out before us.
Keep strengthening the faith in your life path!
The subsequent two years seemed like a never-ending personal inner battle. I now look back at these years as my Dark Night of the Soul (DNS) – a term introduced to me by Vijay. It was messy and painful beyond words, and on many occasions I would have given anything to just have my “old life” back. Only, that’s not the way it works… and I can say with conviction that as I climbed out of the hole, shaking off the old me, something new had started to shine.
Trust that each ending brings a new beginning!
Remaining Grounded on the Path
I now recognise that this decade was all about personal transformation. I was guided (and I followed) to let go of old beliefs. This has almost disassembled me and put me back together again, new, fresh and ready for the new decade. Now I work with intention, setting and continuously clearing, and I want to bring your attention (again) to a great tool for remaining grounded through it all (i.e. the opposite to “freaking out”), and that is: Journaling (more on that in posts to come)!
Other than that, a word of advice:
If you ever find yourself feeling stuck in feelings of guilt, helplessness, rage, anger and so on, imagine, visualise yourself and FEEL yourself moving towards joy, love, acceptance and expansive generosity to all of life. Gratitude is the highest form of manifestation.
Perhaps you managed to already do some of this in the last decade. If not, perhaps you’ll crack it in this new one. Enjoy looking back to look forward!
Happy New Year
Let us together Shine & Rise in 2020
Interested to read more? “Food for your Soul” is a regular column by Claudia Roth – featuring short articles for moments of reflection to look at life from a different perspective (should you choose to!). Invest 3/4 minutes (on this occasion 5 minutes!) and allow your thoughts to ponder. Awareness creates choice.
About the Author: People want to feel healthy, happy and more deeply connected. Claudia’s aim as an author is to bring the most meaningful spiritual wisdom into modern context making it accessible to those longing for a full experience of Self, one that goes beyond the current hype of self development.