I’m calling on all my courage to share a few simple ideas with you that I have at the moment. Some details that have changed in my life. It’s different from my usual style, but it’s coming from my heart!
I was making my coffee this morning, when suddenly, I felt such immense joy, I started smiling from ear to ear. I was simply in paradise.
I almost felt guilty, there in my beautiful house full of light and calm. “It’s easy to be happy when you have all this” shouted a voice from deep in my mind.
But then another, calmer voice, came to me. “Not true” it said. “You could just as easily be complaining right now.”
“You are single, you live all alone, and the world seems to be falling apart – your inner happiness is your most fundamental right. It has little to do with your beautiful home, and a lot to do with the peace you’ve been cultivating. So allow yourself to feel it.”
Making my bed.
I never used to make my bed. I liked unmade beds. I liked leaving something undone behind me. I would get up, leave my room, and not come back to it until the evening. My bed was a constant explosion. My life too.
And then I started meditating.
And then I started doing little exercises in awareness.
Spending an hour, when I felt inspired, really being present for each one of my actions. Really looking at and touching the things and people around me. And feeling everything deeply.
One morning, I felt like making my bed. Respecting it. Yes. Just like you’d respect a person. You wouldn’t leave a person who had carried you all night without showing them a little respect.
So I started getting up a little more slowly in the morning, and making my bed. Not out of obligation, but out of respect, gratitude and love.
And that’s when I finally realized that respecting everything we touch is also a matter of respecting ourselves.
I’ve always been a seductress. Not in a dangerous way, but in a kind of inescapable way. Like when I open my arms to you, you feel so loved you can’t ever leave. One of my boyfriends told me one day, when I was leaving him (because I was always leaving people): “But how am I going to live without your eyes on me? Your gaze brightened my life.”
Seduction was a game, and love was easy.
Then, one day, I was seduced myself. A man came over to me and presented himself as everything I’d ever dreamed of. He hid his flaws, made my life new and exciting, said all the words I’d always wanted to hear. I fell madly in love.
And because we always eventually wake up from a dream, he started to reveal who he really was. A man. That’s all.
And maybe not the man for me, as it turns out.
I started to realize that seduction is artificial and often a lie – and that life was actually holding up a painful mirror for me.
I realized that in that dimension I was living in, where you don’t reveal who you really are, love is superficial. And if I kept living in that unbridled way, I would never truly be loved and I would never be able to truly love.
So I’ve started to show men who I really am. I’m not a seductress anymore. I’m a woman. That’s all.
Letting the inner critic speak.
Every morning, I drink a smoothie.
And every morning, I don’t know where it comes from, but I hear a mocking voice. A voice that tells me I’m being boring with all this healthy stuff. That I’m pretending to be someone I’m not. That I’m annoying with my meditation. That I’ve become too American. That inner voice rolls its eyes to the sky as I add two spoonfuls of vegetable protein and a dash of ashwagandha.
I drink my smoothie. It’s healthy. I love it. I feel good.
But even so, that voice continues to attack me. This is too good to be true, you know by 11am you’re going to gobble down chocolate. And it’s true, often by 11, I do head for the chocolate.
But every morning, I keep making my smoothie, enjoying it and letting that voice talk. I’ll keep letting it talk, hoping that one day it won’t have anything left to say to me anymore.
Letting the exterior critic speak.
I’ve always been criticized. First of all, I grew up in France, where criticism is our national sport. And in a family where we were quick to criticize. And then, through work and opening up to others, I was exposed to constant criticism.
I kind of have a hard time with criticism (I could write a paragraph about my ego, but I’m afraid it would get boring and you’d start criticizing me) (hahaha).
It got to the point where I had learned to second guess all of my actions.
And I avoided doing things out of fear of being judged.
I ended up closing myself up in a box where I was suffocating, all out of fear of being criticized.
Fashion, success, all that. While personally, I just wanted to talk about the soul and the beauty of a sunrise.
Today, I just take a deep breath and go for it. It’s still difficult, and I’m still criticized, but I don’t forget to nod to my bravery and continue on the path toward my truth.
One day a week, I try to arrange things so I won’t see anyone and don’t make any plans. That’s one of the very good things about being single – having that freedom. Usually, I do this on Sundays.
I digest my emotions from the week, I observe them. I rest, body and soul, without guilt. It’s changed my life.
At first, solitude scared me. Then I learned to take control of it. I even learned to love it. And then I started to really need it.
I want to try not to use any screens that day. The least amount of things possible. I may even start trying to fast. I have a friend who does that once a week and she says it does her a lot of good. But I’m not sure yet. I’m trying to trust my instinct.
And for learning how to listen to that instinct, there’s nothing better than spending time alone.
I dance a lot, all the time. Alone, with my dog, in dance class, or with people. I tell a lot of jokes, I see lots of friends, I overflow with ideas, I love tequila, and all I want to do is laugh. There are a few things that haven’t changed.
Facing it all.
Hitting a wall in life means facing some ruins. Taking the time to rebuild means coming to terms with those ruins. You can’t just change where you live, change countries, change people, change families.
Facing it means taking a deep breath, revisiting the scene and going back where it happened, turning over every stone and deciding which things you want to keep when you rebuild your new emotional house.
For me, everything changed the day I promised to be honest with myself. So coming to terms also means facing the people who have a hard time seeing us change. Whether it’s a spiritual awakening, a divorce, a life change, or coming out – you have to face the disappointment and sadness of others, and deal with the grief of losing the person you once were.
And then you can put in place the stones you’ve chosen to keep, one by one, until you’ve rebuilt your home.
Until one day, you’re finally ready to open the door again.
Translated by Andrea Perdue