13. Step to the Plate

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“God gets you to the plate, but once you are there you’re on your own.”

-Ted Williams

Spring is officially here, which is easily my favorite season. Not only because of the weather, but every spring brings us a new baseball season. If you’re like me when you are watching the art of baseball everything just seems right in the world. The perfection displayed on a baseball diamond is a magnificent thing to witness.

Watching the game is one thing, participating is another.  I am writing this because a few days ago, not on the ball field but in the game of life, I was thrown a curveball. The end result was a big swing and a miss.  I immediately found myself irritated, frustrated and mad.  Why did I deserve this curveball?  I try to participate in life everyday and do my best to grow as a person at the same time embracing the the life I have been given.  I thought how dare I get this for my efforts?

After stepping back and reviewing the situation with some close friends of mine I realized that I was not unhappy with the curveball, I was unhappy with myself for not being prepared for it.  After all, is not life full of curveballs?  I would be naive to think that life is full of nothing but fastballs right down the middle of the plate.  Therefore I found myself asking why was I not prepared for the curve?

Upon a little more reflection I also realized that my life is full of fastballs right down the middle.  My problem had become that I was not embracing them as I had thought I was.  I was not swinging for the fences of life.   Today I will fully embrace the easy fastballs that life deals me and be aware to not take them for granted.  I will also prepare myself for that big sweeping curve that will someday come my way again.  With some simple practices of gratitude and humility I will fully participate in all aspects of my life.  With some action and practice no matter fastball or curveball I will always swing for the fences.

Affirmation:  I am ready and prepared for anything that comes my way today because in this moment I am whole, loved and supported.

Call to Action:  It is easy to see how an unplanned and unpredictable situation can really startle us in life but it really is through those times that we get a check as to how rightly we are living.  Have you had any curveballs thrown your way lately?  If so how did you adjust to get a better perspective on them?  Please share so that we all can follow your footsteps of growth and change.

In continuation of building our community of inspiration, I hope you enjoyed our third guest submission. This year, the last Friday of each month a guest writer will have their submission posted.  If you have a thought, stance or story to share please send it to our email @ changeyourlifefriday@gmail.com

12. Connecting

“Life is a journey, not a destination.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Last weekend I had the chance to travel through several states and log many miles with a group of people in a van.  Over the course of the weekend we were able to go through several stages of growth together since we all had a common goal on our journey.  At the beginning of the trip it was a bit awkward because the group was comprised of 11 people who knew each other mostly as acquaintances.  At some point everyone in the van started to get out of their shells through accepting the group and the role that we all had collectively as well as individually.  The music inspired conversation which turned into jokes and joy for everyone involved.  At some point we also came up with a chant made us smile and turned some heads which finished with the phrase, “No Regrets.” We continued to bond and by the time we returned it seemed that we didn’t want to part since our conversations continued to deepen throughout the journey.

Over the past several days since the trip we have all seemingly found reasons to get together and relive the moments that we shared on our trip and also make new memories together.  I really feel that once we all started to let our guard down and talk about our lives honestly and from the heart our little community began to bond in a very beautiful way.  The most interesting part to me when I look at this experience from the outside is how we all grew once we freed ourselves from judgement and accepted each other and our mission.

I think the lesson that I learned and that I want to share with you is that I find so much growth for myself through the times I spend with others.  I also find that there is not much that is more inspirational than to see someone else grow and change in front of my eyes.  When we left I am certain that we were all thinking about our goal for the trip but I feel that it was in the journey that we found the most growth.  The only way that this can happen though is to get involved and take an active role in the lives that we have been given.  I am so proud of my new crew that took that chance at being uncomfortable and put themselves in a position to show me once again that I am completed by the people that I surround myself with.  Thank you all for being a part of my experience, I love my CYLfriday crew, No Regrets!

Affirmation: Today I embrace my journey. I make memories and connections with all who I come in contact with. I love the idea that all people can be old friends when I let them in.

Call To Action: Share with us a recent time that you have had deep meaningful conversation with someone other that a dear friend. When was the last time you were vulnerable, and the result was something unpredictable and beautiful?

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11. Reach Out

“Don’t be afraid to talk, be afraid of staying quite.” – Eugene Lebid

I was talking to a friend the other day who proclaimed that her life was ruined, her future was hopeless, and she had no one to turn to. I quickly spouted off a list of family members and friends that could potentially help her. All of which were immediately rebutted with reasons why they could not or would not based on past interactions. I simply replied maybe this time it will be different.

I know the feelings of hopelessness and isolation.   I have been in that same position where I cannot see the light. It usually takes another person to point out that there is hope and the light is very close. I often forget how many people are in this world that I can turn to. I forget that when I need help all I have to do is ask. I forget that I have been here before and it is always darkest before the dawn. By reaching out and being vulnerable, I have grown in many ways. The majority of this growth was ignited by some of the most unlikely people, or so I thought. It is a great joy to go from seemingly hopeless to seeing a world of light and possibilities.

I beg of you to reach out. Talk about what is bothering you. Share your struggles with us and may we help you bear the load. When we keep things bottled inside it only makes us sick. When we share we heal and learn that maybe other people have been in our same situation and can lead us to what helped them.

Affirmation: I am loved. I have someone I can share with. I am a part of a community. I can be there for my friends who need me.

Call to action: Share something with a friend or loved one that you decided to keep to yourself. Maybe they are waiting for your call now. You can leave a comment below about how this changed your life today, or email us directly if you don’t want to talk to any of your friends. changeyourlifefriday@gmail.com

10. Evolution

“Love is a sacred reserve of energy; it is like the blood of spiritual evolution.” – Teilhard De Chardin

Over the last five years I have been conscious of my ever growing life, and specifically I have been an active member in my own personal evolution. I am fairly certain this process has been going on my entire life, but I also humbly acknowledge I have not always been a participant in the development.

Today I get to be engaged in my personal growth. My greatest growth has come in two forms. First when I realize something in my life that is an internal block to Love, and in response to this epiphany work to dissolve that block. This usually occurs when some “crisis” occurs. It might look like an end of a relationship or perhaps a financial problem.  The other is when I actively find situations that take me out of my comfort zone, and makes me aggressively do some deep soul searching. One personal example is a meditation retreat I attended.

Inadvertently this week’s topic has elements of the last 3 weeks of CYLFriday. The fact is it takes a great deal of self-love and persistence to evolve in breaking down internal barriers, and seeking barriers that I may not be aware of. The process has been such a wonderful adventure I now find it important to pass it on to others. If I am able to take action to be a better me this is the best type of leadership I can give my fellow wonderer on this path called Life.

Affirmation: I draw from the sacred well of life to bring in the Love that helps me to evolve to a new outlook and new me.

Call to Action:  You are an ever-evolving, ever-unfolding expression of love and life.  Take some time to see where this growth has taken place recently, truly take the time to honor that growth and share it with the people around you.  I know the best teachers that I have ever had in my life are the ones that knew and lived their passions.  You are one of those teachers, head forth and find your students!