“There is nothing more dreadful than the habit of doubt. Doubt separates people. It is a poison that disintegrates friendships and breaks up pleasant relations. It is a thorn that irritates and hurts; it is a sword that kills.” Buddha
Most of us carry around suitcases filled with doubt. We doubt our abilities, our intuition, our strength. We belittle ourselves and put ourselves down because we are filled with doubt. Where does doubt come from? Personally, I feel it is placed by people trying to keep us down, by the bully on the playground of life. In Romancing the Vines, Francesca is filled with doubt that she can’t create the wine she feels she is destined to create. The doubt is strategically placed by Enrico to keep her down, to keep her in her place and dependent on him. Like many of us, she is too blind to see the truth and it isn’t until a trip to a few past lives that the truth unfolds. (Okay, you’re going to have to read the book to see if she was able to create the wine.)
How many times have your had someone tell you, “You can’t do that!” Your soul is beaten down and you begin to believe the words and your own self-doubt. Are you going to be like Francesca and allow others to keep you down or are you going to throw off the cloak of self-doubt and seize the day?
“In the name of God, stop a moment, cease your work, look around you.” Leo Tolstoy
Today on this blessed Sunday, follow the wisdom of Mr. Tolstoy and take your being off the escalator of life. Fall is beginning. The hustle and bustle of the summer is shifting as the nights grow longer, the colors begin to turn, and the heat lessens. Studies have suggested that if you want to live longer you need to embrace the wisdom of your elders: eat a healthy diet, exercise, sleep 7-8 hours, and take one day off a week to recharge. Sometimes that’s hard to do in our fast paced world, but if you learn to stop a moment and embrace the beauty of the world in which you inhabit, you will be surprised at how much better you feel when the week commences.
This time of year the splendor of the colors, the golden light, and coolness of the air fills me with anticipation of projects that lie ahead. I realize that the holidays are around the corner and with grandchildren I am preparing early so I will not be frazzled and fatigued when they arrive. Take advantage of Nature’s preparing for her long winter’s rest and prepare for your own. It’s time to pull out last winter’s clothes and edit what no longer suits you. This time of year, as I stop a moment, I am reminded to let go. As the Fall Equinox begins today, when dark and light are in perfect balance, I realize the days will grow shorter and shorter. But in the Jewish tradition, Rosh Hashanah calls in the new year and this year I will honor my Jewish grandmother and adopt this tradition.
“So during those first moments of the day, which are yours and yours alone, you can circumvent these boundaries and concentrate fully on spiritual matters. And this gives you the opportunity to plan the time management of the entire day.” Menachem Mendel Schneerson
I have discovered that if I don’t set personal boundaries I become exhausted and I lack focus. My head hurts and I snap. Setting personal boundaries help me accomplish my daily plan and I stay on track. Unfortunately, people try to derail me with their problems. With thirty employees, there isn’t a day that someone doesn’t have a problem they deem is overwhelming. That is why the third step of The Way is so important: Be aware of energy thieves. These are people who steal your energy. Choose not to be around these negative and manipulate people and learn to say no. After years of practice, I have learned to detach and stand back.
Okay, there are times you have to be around them. Whether they be co-workers, family members, or friends you are stuck with them for a period of time. If you’re not careful their sticky energy will attach to you as they try and suck your life force. Surrounding yourself with white light in the morning helps. Meditation in the morning sets your intention for the day.
For many of us we were taught that we had to put others’ needs before our own. It was preached in our families and in churches, especially if you were a woman. There will be times in your life you will put someone’s needs first: a small child, an elder, a person suffering through a disease, but for the most part you don’t have to. That mode of conduct was created by society. Let it go. You don’t own people’s problems. That’s their journey–not yours.