A Life of Being, Having, and Doing Enough
Part Five Thoughts : A Revolution Within Ourselves.
Living a life of enough. From most of the readers I have talked to, they have come to this point of the book and are eager to know what the application living a life of enough actually looks life. I felt that too. I find that it is interesting that this is also the shortest section of the book. I believe this is because this is the point in our journey where we take what has been written, all of those thoughts and feelings that were evoked in us and we begin to sort through them.
Over the summer I spent some time in Ireland, some of it by myself, some of it with a group of sojourners there to spend time and learn from poet, David Whyte. You may have noticed his poem in the beginning of the book. One of the consistent themes that David talks about and writes about is “the conversation.” This is where change begins. So in regards to living a life of enough you have to begin the conversation with yourself. You have to dig into the hard questions brought up during your time reading. You have to take notice of what parts of the book you underlined. You have to pay attention to what parts of the book you struggled with, lean in to find out why.
As I finished the book the first thing I thought to myself was...it is simple. What I want in life and daily really is simple. It is all that is outside of me that complicates this whole journey for me. I had a friend a day later write me confessing in vulnerability that she did not necessarily struggle with the idea of living a life of enough but yet managing other people's expectations of what her days and time should look like. It hit me hard. Often I have gone a step further and presumed what others expect of me, and added to my days unnecessarily.
So what does life look like now? Now that you have read and been awaken to the ideas in this book. Honestly, that is the beauty here...you get to choose.
For me, I feel the freedom to set my days up for a slower pace. To not overcommit myself any longer. To plan for downtime. To plan for the things in life that really bring me joy. I now feel free to release anything, any commitment, and anyone that is not serving my greater goal.
Life is really short. I know too well the 10 thousand sorrows talked about in the book, I want to make room for the 10 thousand joys still waiting to be felt. I want to live quietly, in love with life around me. I want to be open to the needs of others. I want to be ready when the Lord calls upon me for his purpose. To do that. I need simple. I need the simplicity of Enough.
Enough is not a destination, but yet a journey.
“How many times in the rush and hurry of our important work and hectic lives are we so driven by our search for happiness that it is impossible for us to ever find it because we literally rush past the very fragrance of happiness that surrounds us everywhere?” pg. 206
“Here, we restate our opening premise: Happiness is an inside job. Sufficiency and contentment are grown in the soil of moments, choice points, and listening at each juncture for the simplest, most deeply true, next right thing... When we are willing to be surprised, receptive to sensual cues in our bodies and hearts, when we are awake and attentive, not driven by fear, willing to give and receive, able to see the beauty there is and find on our lips gentle, unexpected eruptions of gratitude,we may find happiness where we never believed possible.” pg. 202
“When begrudging acceptance slowly becomes a full-hearted, honest, loving acceptance, some uncontrollable, unpredictable alchemy invariably has its way with us, as we begin to feel grateful. Yes, we can practice it, try saying it, journaling, or writing about it, and these things are all good and useful tools. But the truth is that acceptance simply becomes gratitude.
Make no mistake: Gratitude does not come swiftly or easily, nor does it in any way erase the searing grief of the loss, the pain, or the fury at the injustice. It merely invites something beautiful, fresh, and new to grow and flourish right beside it.” pg. 214
“When we allow this world of ten thousand joys and ten thousand sorrows to fully and honestly find room in our heart, there is a holy alchemy that erupts within us. Grace and healing grow and flourish right beside our sorrows, and our faithful heart gently cradles the mall. The spacious sufficiency of our heart can teach us the next true thing and plant the seed that forms after the fire. Being present with ourselves, making choices from our own quiet wisdom, finding sanctuary deep within us, gives birth to a beginner’s [not expert’s] life, toward an unknowable destiny, our path created by our every moment walking it. ...A life of enough is born in every moment – on the way we listen, the way we respond to the world, the way we see what is and tell the truth of who we are…” pg. 236
What is the first thing that comes to mind that you want to change about your days?
Do you feel more expectations from yourself or others when it comes to what your days look like?
What does your most ideal day look like? Life?
What are you willing to give up in order to experience the freedom of enough each day?
Is there a person in your life that would support your journey?
Is there a person in your life that would oppose your journey?
How are you ready to set your boundaries?
How are you ready to ask for what you need?
What is it that you need most right now, each day?