“It was a high counsel that I once heard given to a young person, “Always do what you are afraid to do.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sometimes the storyline and problem solving that can and often does dominate life can consume it. We can’t see the light changing in the sky or hear the birds in the morning. We miss out on lighthearted exchanges happening around us because we are too consumed with the weight of what has gone wrong. I write this as a way of describing myself these last few days.

Working to shake off the well-aimed and heartless predictions of impending failure and find joy in the day-to-day efforts has felt contrived and forced. I was too lost in thought and the overdrive of trying to solve a problem to make something happen.  It rarely gets better from this place. I know this and I still get stuck here.

You must decide to thrive. You have to force yourself to keep doing all of the practices that you know from having done them a hundred times before work to get you out of your head.  Exercising until you break a sweat works every time. We are spirit beings living in a body that is always better in motion, until we stop moving and become nothing more than a mind that repeats familiar tapes.

The more that I can get myself into nature and into my body, the more that my real life can lead me to a life where I know I am thriving. Walking through the wooded park in our city today, lost in the storyline of problem solving, I was jarred awake by the appearance of two llamas on the path. My dog went nuts, which stirred the llamas’ curiosity and they followed us. Who would have guessed that a couple of llamas would be the key to get me back.

I don’t want to waste another minute of my life afraid of the consequences of living. I want to thrive and have all the fear and wonder and curiosity and courage that a body can hold. I want to be surprised by llamas or just be able to always listen first for the birds around me.  It isn’t that hard to do, I learned again once I shut the mindless repeating tapes off in my mind.