How did Nelson Mandela endure prison for 27 years and emerge a stronger, more loving, inspirational leader than before?
Why do people win the lottery, have all the money they could ever need or want, and end up with nothing — more miserable than they were before?
How did Jesus, in the midst of being hated, beaten and crucified, cry out with LOVE in his heart, saying, “Father, forgive them – they don’t know what they’re doing” ?
How did Robin Williams, who had all the success in the world – fame, money, accomplishments, beautiful relationships – still struggle with depression deep enough to end his life?
These seemingly illogical situations point us to a reality that many of us KNOW, yet ignore on a daily basis:
Our true reality is NOT external. It’s internal.
True life is lived from the inside out, not the other way around.
Our happiness is not determined by whatever is happening to us externally.
So why do we ignore this fact that is SO obvious?
Why not focus all of our energy on this internal reality, since it’s pretty obvious that is where the power is?
Well, our culture emphasizes the external at every turn. Our bodies our glorified, money is a god. Accumulation of stuff, college degrees, outward accomplishments – these are determiners of our success.
Focus on externals is everywhere.
So what I’ve found, is that in order to truly focus on the beauty and power of my internal reality, I have had to detach from our culture in many ways. I quit the corporate world, I spent lots of time alone, I stopped going to church, I let go of my big house and moved into a school bus, I fasted from food for 33 days (this had amazing results for ME, but I don’t advise this – I will blog more about this later), I let go of family and relational obligations, and I let go of cultural expectations.
I stopped DOING, and started BEING.
And what I have found, since quieting the voices of my culture, since extracting myself completely from the nauseatingly loud messages of what ‘success’ really is – I have found the greatest treasure of my life.
I have found a Source deep within, yet way beyond me, where true LIFE really is:
Where Life is unlimited, encouragement is never wavering, JOY is in DEEP SUPPLY, the energy is always available, the lights are always ON, everything is CLEAR, Life IS The fairy-tale, the Dream is reality, I see WHO I REALLY AM – where the Power is, the SAFETY, the VISION, the STRENGTH, the LOVE – this is the Source of LIFE, the WOMB of CREATION.
Sounds great, right? But HOW? You’re thinking –
I can’t move into a school bus, quit my job, fast from food, let go of obligations!! That’s great for you, Noelle, but I have things I have to DO.
And I get that. I’m not encouraging you to copy me or to take tons of crazy actions with your life. But I am gonna tell you what I did to find this treasure, so that maybe you will be inspired to do ONE THING today to quiet the other voices and look within.
Because all of this treasure is there inside you, right now.
You can stop in THIS moment, breathe, let go of ALL the worries you have about what you have to do today, tomorrow, later this week.
You can let all of it go for a few moments, and ask yourself,
“Who am I, really? What do I REALLY want from this life?”
If you can start asking questions like that, you will be AMAZED at what happens. Most of us just never take the time to ASK. To SEEK.
Maybe we’re scared of the answer. Maybe we know we’re not living the life we REALLY wanna be living, and we don’t wanna face that.
It’s ok. When you’re ready, you’ll know, and you’ll do it.
For me, journaling was the catalyst that led me to this treasure trove inside me. Even before I left the corporate world, I would get up at 5:30 every morning and go to Starbucks — not because I was forcing myself, or because I thought I SHOULD, but because I was dying inside with the life I was living, working so many hours at a job that just wasn’t ME.
So I started writing out my feelings — Crying out to God in my journal about the huge weight on my shoulders, how much I longed for more TIME to find myself.
And incredible things started happening.
These 2 hours before work became like going to heaven – and I’m not talking about some spiritual visions, ethereal crap like that – I’m talking REAL FUN. Like tangible, real, gritty ENJOYMENT. I started getting answers to my questions – I would just start writing, and pretty soon my writing turned into all CAPS, and it was like messages from God.
It gave me encouragement, visions about who I really am and what my destiny is. It became my favorite time of day, and my life-line.
And then those 2 hours expanded with so much JOY and ENERGY, that they became my LIFE.
My whole life now is lived in that dream world.
I live FROM heaven, to earth.
I am in a constant state of JOY and peace and LOVE, and when I interact with the world, to share a blog or go to coffee with a friend, I live from the overflow of my internal reality that is heavenly and magical.
Now – I’m gonna be honest and let you know, that as I’ve started blogging and seen some success in the number of views I’ve been getting, I’ve been TEMPTED to get off balance. I’ve been checking my phone a lot, because it’s really fun to see how many of you are out there reading. And there’s nothing wrong with that, except if it takes my focus away from my internal joy. So just a little reminder to myself this morning, and then I’m back HERE, where I belong.
Where nothing can shake me. I know who I am. And true LIFE is in unlimited supply.
I encourage you, if you have not tapped into your unlimited internal supply of JOY, just take one moment today to STOP.
Let go of your worries, surrender your plans, and take a moment to look within – whether it’s writing in a journal or having a cup of coffee by yourself, or going on a beautiful walk, or watching an inspirational movie.
Take a moment to DREAM. You will be amazed at how this beautiful world, where true life is, starts to invade every moment of your external reality, if you let it.
Let’s bring heaven to earth together,
by finding our joy within,
one moment at a time!