Do you have a longstanding fantasy of an invitation to adventure or a deeply coveted opportunity suddenly landing in your lap? Any number of my friends and clients entertain a fantasy (that could certainly come true!) of true love knocking on their door from one instant to the next. Others dream that a surprise phone-call will inform them they have won the lottery or are slated for some huge inheritance. I myself have on-going fantasies of major, catapulting career breakthroughs. And from the time I left Canada for college in the States (30 years ago) I’ve kept a toiletry case packed in case I am met with an unexpected opportunity to travel to an exotic locale, and have only an hour to get to the airport.
Well, last week I was settling in for a week of spring-cleaning. Tackling the kids rooms. Purging. Sorting. I was also going to do a week-long cleanse, juices, smoothies, and soups only. And I was going to do yoga everyday. And I was going to finish the edits currently needed on my website. All this was possible because my husband was taking the kids to St. Lucia for spring break, and much as I was going to miss them (yes, deeply), I was also all set to capitalize on having some time to myself.
As the saying goes: Man Plans; God Laughs. At the last minute, it turned out my husband would have to delay his travel by a couple of days. And it wound up being more expedient and more cost effective for me to travel with the kids, with my husband joining us later, instead of changing the dates on all three tickets (not to mention, disappointing the kids). So here, my ultimate travel fantasy had landed in my lap! Thank goodness the toiletry case was already packed and ready to go, and I had only to pack a few sundresses and swimsuits.
So there I was in the throes of getting something I had always wanted. And there I was feeling uptight and unprepared. I was truly excited about the change of plans, delighted to spend quality time with my kids. And yet, the swiftness of the switch-up gave me a headache. I was stressed about the spring-cleaning I would not be doing. I was filled with lament that the kids would now be returning from their trip to shelves still cluttered with books and activities tailored to their younger years. The idea of missing the yoga classes caused me low-grade anxiety. The website would now remain as is, even as I had sworn to myself that as of May 1st it would be fully updated to reflect where my offerings stand today.
So, what I learned is that “being prepared” to have a dream come true takes a lot more than having a toiletry bag packed and hidden away. It more so takes a loosening of our grip on life. It takes a lighter-footed treading through the landscape of our lives. It takes a more flexible and playful orientation than we are usually greeting our day-to-day with. It takes living as a default mode with some headspace, elbowroom, and breathing room. It isn’t as easy as we might think to let go of all our current attachments, investments, and commitments in order to let in that windfall of money. Or to make space for that magical new relationship. Or that thrilling career opportunity. Or that unexpected trip to an island in the sun.
So with that powerful wake-up call having been followed by a relaxing time in paradise, it’s now a lesson learned. I hereby declare that going forward, I will be living more lightly. More playfully. I will be living with a greater sense of ease and dexterity and flow and fluidity. For only then are you in a position to gracefully receive those things you are wanting. Those things you are wishing to experience, be, do, or have. And only then are you in a position to actually enjoy the process of receiving those things!
Our greatest currency in life is our well-being. Let us cultivate ourselves to be people who can truly remain in a state of well-being (sidestepping vertigo, overwhelm, or a headache) as our dreams do come true. I enthusiastically invite you to join me in a deepening of this commitment to yourself!