So if you didn’t know, I am celebrating the BIG 5-0 this week, hence this blog title.
It’s tongue-in-cheek of course, because no one knows HOW to turn 50 any more than anyone knows how to parent or how to live life. But I think there is this idea in human society that there is a right way and a wrong way to do things. The “right way” varies a lot by your circle and geography but in my Southern California existence the standard tends to be this amazing, magnificent life where you are gorgeous and rich and turn everything you touch into gold and have the perfect ass. And then there’s the “wrong way” which is just regular and how most people live who aren’t gorgeous and rich. I’m simplifying here but you get my drift. The expectations for perfection is crazy high in all areas of life. In some neighborhoods and social circles it’s definitely worse than others. My circle is really chill but I still feel this expectation on some level just because of the media.
By these standards, most of us always come up short.
It’s the equivalent of the impossible body-image standards that pollute our society but the way I’m talking about it here, it actually applies to your whole LIFE! It’s pretty damn OPPRESSIVE when you think about it! We think we should all look like JLo and when we look like just regular old beautiful peeps we feel like something’s wrong with us and that we should hate our thighs!
Truth is JLo turned 50 this year too….and guess what she got as a birthday present??? A custom Porsche from her Baseball Hall of Fame fiance! Now just because I didn’t get a Porsche, somehow I’m supposed to feel “less than??” REALLY?? Is that what I’m up against for this birthday? Is that what I should be aspiring to? I’m not suggesting that you are feeling bad that you didn’t get a Porsche for your birthday but I’m trying to call attention to the high standards we all face in our own communities and how much stress it causes to try to measure up. Maybe it’s the college your kid “needs” to get into or the perfectly decorated clean house you need to keep, or how your body “should” look. It’s very subtle sometimes and it’s largely internal but I’m here to say:
I’m so tired of it!
When do we all get to be good enough just as we are no matter what??
Truth is, if I had to guess, even JLo probably hates HER thighs! And she probably wanted something completely different than a Porsche because she hasn’t even driven a car in 25 years! JLo’s birthday probably didn’t even measure up for HER! I’m not even kidding!
I worked for several years in high end drug and alcohol rehabs and had the pleasure of working with many celebrities….really famous athletes, rock stars and even personal development gurus. Guess what? EVERYONE struggles with unworthiness. People you would never think. I can honestly say that the people who are living these amazing lives where they feel good enough are only the people who you don’t personally know. Cuz if you knew them intimately, you would know that they are struggling with the “enoughness” issue too!
It’s kind of like money. If you don’t work on scarcity from the inside (as in beliefs, mindset, etc.) you can make literally millions of dollars and never feel financially secure. It’s the same with our lives. If we don’t work on being enough on the inside, we can achieve the impossible and still feel like crap about ourselves.
We are all living in a Trance of Unworthiness!
This is what mindfulness author, Tara Brach calls the Trance of Unworthiness. We are all in a trance that we are not good enough and that our lives aren’t good enough. We stay in this trance no matter how amazing we are and how great our lives are. We never really get out of it no matter how much we do or have or achieve.
Society keeps us stuck in this pattern because…think about it…if we didn’t feel unworthy, what would we buy? And how would we spend our time? In some ways the economy would come to a screeching halt! We’d probably spend more money on healthy food but way less on expensive clothing, cars and real estate and more on things that really truly brought joy to our hearts (not to say those things can’t bring joy). Maybe organic farmers would be the new millionaire moguls! The balance of power would completely shift! We’d spend our time not working to generate income to buy more stuff but just to do things we love and support meaningful causes.
Sounds way simpler and way better, doesn’t it?
For me this is the real “right way” to turn 50: it’s to give up this idea that we are not enough and to fully step into our sense of deep worthiness just for being alive!
But the truth is, you can do this at ANY age and in any phase of life. You can also apply this to literally ANY area of life whether it be parenting, career, body image, living situation, holidays, birthdays, you name it, we can apply it. We can give up our expectations and live simply in the moment in any moment we are in. We can all start right now.
We are all expressions of the Divine. How would your life change if you lived this truth? What would you spend your time doing? What would you spend your money on if you were already ENOUGH just as you are?
Here’s a little practice for you:
Start by setting your intentions with the following statement
I am already more than enough AND I want to express/share my enoughness in this way:
Then think about what it is that inspires you, interests you or brings you joy without any need to achieve or get somewhere by doing it. Begin to make a list if that feels right and begin to create a vision from that place.
My personal share:
That’s what I’m doing today. I’m making a little 5 year plan for myself for how I want to live now that I am 50. I’m here on this planet for a reason at this time with my specific set of talents and thoughts and interests. What brings me joy is the GPS that shows me which direction to go. I don’t care how long it takes me to get there. I’ve always done things at my own pace. It’s bringing me a lot of joy to write down a loose 5 year plan for what I want to create in my life.
This blog is actually part of that. For years now I’ve been feeling called to write more about spirituality and personal growth and development and to share my personal journey and challenges in these realms. A lot of what has stopped me has been feeling like I didn’t have anything to say that was “good enough.”
This is another example of how no matter how far along you get, your unworthiness never goes away! I’ve been studying meditation, personal growth and psychology since 1995…25 freakin YEARS!! I have achieved a lot by some standards: a doctorate degree, advanced certifications, yoga teacher training, Reiki Master training…I even spent 10 full days in silence at a meditation retreat….and I still didn’t feel I had anything to share.
I’m not sharing this with you to brag, but to inspire YOU to share YOUR unique gifts with the world and stop waiting to feel like you’re “enough” to do it. That feeling is never going to come! Feel your unworthiness and do what brings you joy anyway! I’ll be right there with ya…feeling unworthy too! We’ve got this! It’s time. It’s my time and it’s your time….and the world needs us….now more than ever. Let’s DO this!!
And of course I’m here for you if you want to work deep on that trance of unworthiness and heal it at least to the point where it no longer holds you back. I don’t think it can completely go away, but I’m still going to try! I think your relationship to that unworthy part of you can change through the many healing modialities I offer from Mindfulness to EMDR to Heartmath to Reiki. (I can also help you find another therapist if you don’t resonate with me!) I’ve developed a comprehensive system over the years that really helps heal the traumas that underlie these belief systems. I call it Breakdown to Breakthrough. Reach out to me if this is something that would interest you. My book and on-line course will be coming soon (well…in the next 5 years! HA!)