For most of my life, I lived to please others, mostly strangers. It was a strange way to live and extremely painful. Then one day, I decided to attend a heart-opening retreat hosted by Kathy Zavada because I love her beautiful songs and her singing. At this retreat, for the first time, I tasted the sweet freedom of letting myself just be ME! It was miraculous!
In the past, I would have been filled with anxiety about what the other participants would think of me:
Would they reject me because I’m too skinny, too shy, too awkward?
What should I say or do to impress them? How can I please them so that they will like me?
These were the chains that bound me in the past to a repeating cycle of attracting people who did reject me and betray me. In reality, I betrayed myself. I sold myself to the fear of rejection and scorn, which felt like death to me.
Not this time! I had done the inner work to dissolve the self-hatred that had locked me into this cycle of fear. I had begun to appreciate the perfection that is me. And, I decided I will let that perfection shine through this time.
At Kathy’s retreat, I was met with 19 people whose hearts were full of love and compassion. It was the perfect space for me to come out of my shell. So I did. I showed up as ME:
I let myself speak what was important to me, and I let go of worrying about what others might think. I did not try to flatter, and when I sensed a wanting to impress, I stopped and became silent.
I let my body move to the beautiful music in the room. I did not allow myself to worry about how awkward my dance may be or what others may think. I just let the music wash over me and move my body in ways that felt ecstatic.
I practiced my taichi in public: on a rocky outcropping by a beautiful lake, standing in the middle of a loving creek, and on a wooden bridge where I felt the water energy as a heart-felt embrace of welcome. I did not let myself worry that people may think I am weird. I did not get embarrassed. I just enjoyed nature in my own unique way.
What resulted was magical for me. I was not rejected; I was appreciated. I was not scorned; I was embraced and loved. I made new friends that I will treasure from now on. The joy and freedom that welled up inside of me made me glad that I was still alive. I had made a shifted in my life. I had created a miracle.
Ideas for Creating Your Own Miracles
I sense that many today are like me. Their deeply ingrained self-hatred has gradually locked them into a life of pain and suffering. Self-hatred is a root cause of fear, and fear in turn is the source of all pain and suffering.
If you are locked in such a life, please open your heart to the possibility of a miracle. Start by learning to replace the self-hatred with self-love. This is easier said than done for most of us, but if you hold a firm intention for that shift, then the right guidance will come to you. The right teachers will appear; the right tools will keep calling for your attention; and your inner wisdom will know what you need to create the miracles you want in your life.
The teachers and tools that appeared for me are discussed in my Miracles Toolbox. I also highly recommend Kathy’s music and retreats. Perhaps they can help you get started in finding your own teachers and tools.
Here are two of my favorites from Kathy:
May your days be full of miracles!
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all of the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” ~A Course in Miracles