Have you ever noticed that the universe hands you exactly what you expect?
If you expect things to be difficult, they are. If you expect yourself to fail, you will. If you expect to face a challenge, the universe won’t disappoint.
Some call this spirituality. I call it causality.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a spiritual person, I just don’t even need to go need my spiritual toolkit to explain this one.
The mind-body-emotional connection isn’t a connection, It’s all one and the same thing! You are whole, complete, entangled. There is no distinction! One cannot exist without the others.
So when you think something will be embarrassing, your body and emotions are primed ready for that cascade of neurones and chemicals to fire. No matter what happens, you will be embarrassed, at least on some level. It’s a habit. And we reinforce it with our thoughts and our language.
I used to think the universe sent me “lessons”. And once I’d learned my lesson it would then send me a “test” to see how well I’d learned. This was a constructive enough mindset. It meant rather than feeling like a victim I got to tackle a new challenge.
But that’s what it felt like. A challenge! And to be honest, I wasn’t always in the mood for a challenge or a lesson or a test.
But you know what I never tire of? Gifts!
Especially at this time of year. Bring ‘em on. 😀
It was Daisy Nguyen who introduced me to this reframe. She told me:
“Everything the universe throws my way, even the shit, is nothing less than a gift. And exactly what I need right now”.
I don’t know if I could have accepted that on face value a year ago, I was too cynical. Perhaps even a month ago! (thanks to my coaches and mentors I’ve been able to let go of the fear that was driving my cynicism).
I was talking to a friend about this whole idea yesterday. When I explained the quote, his response was shock. Outrage even! He got angry. (He recently had to deal with the passing of his mother and other challenges, so imply these could be seen as a gift, was just plain rude).
I immediately questioned myself. I was filled with a sense of shame and dread. How insensitive had I just been?!!!
But inside my shame and guilt I tried to look at this moment as a gift. Here’s where I get to really show my commitment to all that is positive and beautiful about the universe, and show that a constructive mindset could shine the way.
I remembered what incredible hardship Daisy has faced in her life. If she was able to see it all as a gift, then surely anyone can.
I knew he wasn’t ready for a spiritual explanation. This response needed to be sensitive, but logical: “It doesn’t always feel fair, or good, or CORRECT to view the tragedies as a gift. But it’s incredibly USEFUL. That way even if I can’t bring myself to celebrate the tragedy itself, I choose to look for the good, the joy, the silver-lining, the opportunities that come from it. It may remain a bitter-sweet moment at best, but I feel less stuck and more empowered”.
But as I’m sure you know dear reader, it goes so much deeper than the purely logical benefits. Being able to let go and SURRENDER to the universe, the things we can’t control, to ACCEPT them and ourselves, to feel GRATITUDE for every day and every breath. This is how we escape fear, embrace love and learn to thrive!
Now let’s be honest, I think my friend appreciated my sensitivity and conviction, but I don’t think I’ve converted him yet.
Progressive revelation. Not everyone’s ready for the whole enchilada. I know I wasn’t. It took me a long time to open up to a deeper sense of connection and spirituality.
I’m sure you’ve faced this yourself with friends, family and even clients and prospects. We need to meet them where they’re at, and keep leaving breadcrumbs for them to follow, if they choose, and when they’re ready. Until then, they are already perfect, and completely lovable. And even when they question and challenge us, remember, they are nothing less than a gift.
I want to know: What gifts have the universe sent you right now?