We have a sun porch on the back of our house. Many times, I’ll go there to think.
The sun will gently stream over me as I rest in a comfortable chair, and it will nourish the many plants we have. It’s a wonderful, gentle space to retreat, and no further away than the back of my kitchen. This morning though, I had a completely different environment. Pouring rain pounded on the windows, clouds blocked the sunshine that is usually revealed, and the birds outside–normally my friends when I sit in this sun porch–were absent. Here’s what’s important though–while it appeared to be so different, my sun porch was exactly the same place this morning as it is every other day. It was only the outside variables that had changed, and affected the atmosphere of my normal sanctuary.
It’s similar with our life. It’s so easy to get comfortable with our place in the Universe.
We develop certain expectations for things–our income, our marriage, our work relationships–all the things that create the tapestry of our daily existence. We allow ourselves to begin to depend upon these outer things to shape our internal sense of personal balance, and create the definition of our satisfaction in life.
That’s not how it works though, because these outside variables are not part of us.
They’re just pieces to help shape who we are, not really the things that define our soul. Like the sunshine, or the birds, or the comfortable chair on my porch–our job and our spouse and all the rest of it are only things that shape our experiences in life–they are not actually a part of our inner core.
How easily we forget that.
How often we define ourselves by our job title, or our bank statement, or any of the other labels the world has created for us, and in so doing unintentionally lose sight of our inner self. Our inner self is defined by kindness, love, optimism, hope–those things that spring from within and define who we are us humans. Sadly, these tender parts of us can so easily be deflated by changes outside of us, which many times are beyond our control.
I encourage you today to go deep into your own ‘sun porch’.
I gently challenge you to go down into the place inside of your heart that is the real essence of you as a person, the inner place where joy and creativity reside. Sit there for a bit, ignoring the layers of worldly trouble, and rest.
That place, that tender space–is YOU. And it is always there, my Friend. Always. No matter your income, no matter your job title, no matter anything this nasty world dumps onto you–that gentle space is always within, because that is who you are, not the rest of it.
Never forget that.
Ignore the rain and clouds of your life, because they are transitory.
The calm, the peace and the serenity that is always there inside of you is what is real. You are an amazing, beautiful creature of light, despite whatever the world around you is doing. Shine in the darkness of this troubled world, and the drama of those other things will gently fade away as your core self grows stronger. Shed the concern for the titles, the promotions and the external adulation. Instead, be at peace with who you are right now, and know it is enough.
Because it is.
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**Chanler Jeffers is a woman who has seen many extraordinary things over her lifetime. An adventurer, survivor, overachiever and advocate of kindness in all instances, she has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE), and is a member of their Circle of Champions. She has had the good fortune to live and travel all over the world, grew up as a military dependent, was a single parent for many years, has survived cancer and gently shaped countless people over her years on this little planet we call home. Follow along as she shares her knowledge, her experience and her love. Oh, by the way–one more thing. She’s married to a Bass playing rock star, lucky girl.