Live and Love
Okay, I don’t know what it is, but I’m feeling inspired today. Actually I do know. It’s the fact that some of my friends are dealing with these issues and also because a family member of mine is struggling with cancer. And I am reminded of what is really important in life. Love.
I just wrote a long piece of advice to one of my friends and I want to share the gist of it with you because I forget that some of this is not common knowledge and it has miraculously saved me in my life. And therefore I feel compelled to share it with love.
You never know what is around the next corner. Not that I’m suggesting holding your breath until something comes, but rather, not to imagine that your current life is what your life is going to look like until the end. Things change, quickly or slowly, but they do. The things we focus on are the things we create in life, so if we focus on fear of being alone, then we will be alone. The Universe does not understand the negative. I use this word “Universe” as opposed to the name of some Deity, because it is neutral, neither masculine nor feminine nor personified. If I pray to not be alone, the Universe hears only “alone”. So I must pray for love in my life, then the universe hears love and provides.
I have been very down at times in my life. But almost always because my life wasn’t behaving the way I wanted. We place so many expectations on ourselves — we are brought up to do so. Our society, our friends, our families, all place expectations of marriage, children, heterosexuality, wealth, richness, huge houses, expensive cars, great jobs, second homes, international travel, multiple languages, authoring books, multiple graduate degrees and incredibly handsome, beautiful, charming, blah, blah, blah. NO ONE can live up to these expectations. And yet we try and fail and hate ourselves for not being able to HAVE IT ALL.
In 2008, I finally let go. Let go of these expectations I put on myself and started to ask the Universe what to do. I got out of the driver’s seat and became a passenger, willing to go where I was led, allowing the Universe to show me, rather than force my will. It took a couple of years and it is still changing, but I am living a life I never, ever imagined for myself. I never knew I could write. Never thought I’d be a screenwriter, and now I have two short films and working on two feature length films. I never imagined I’d work in Marketing for Disney Home Entertainment. I didn’t think I’d ever move back to Los Angeles and love it. And I didn’t think I could fall in love again at my age. But I did. My world looks NOTHING like I ever imagined and I am happier than I have ever been. Because I let go of how I thought it should look. It was the letting go that was the hardest thing to do. To really let go.
The life I thought I wanted was actually smaller than the life I have today. We limit ourselves with our expectations. All I did was start asking the Universe to show me where to go and then I shut up and listened. The Universe will guide you and show you if you are willing to let go and listen. Really listen. It speaks in many ways, usually through other people. But, one time, the message came on a billboard. No kidding. I asked if I should take an apartment I couldn’t really afford because I was hoping to get a new job. I looked up and there as a Billboard with this written on it.
“Your means. Live richly. Your means.”
(Live richly within your means.) I didn’t take the apartment and found out the next day that I didn’t get the job. The Universe speaks, we just have to listen.
So if there’s anything I can give you, to make life better, it’s this. Stay open, listen, and let the Universe know what you want, not in small ways like I want to have this job or that house or that person, but I want love, joy, play, purpose, friendship, things like that. Then let the Universe give it to you in a form that is better than you could have imagined. Allow and trust the abundance of the Universe. Don’t give in to fears of scarcity. (Try not to watch the News on TV. It is fear based and meaningless. It does nothing to promote joy, love or abundance.) Don’t limit yourself, expand yourself.
I hope this helps because I want you to have a life you never could have imagined. I want you to die knowing you have lived your life to the fullest, loved as much as you could, shared as much as you could, explored and had adventures as much as you could, smelled flowers, climbed mountains, made friends, touched lives all with a sense of incredible gratitude. That’s a full life.
Now go live.
“Else you got nothing to talk about in the locker room.”
(from Harold and Maude)