For those of you new to this blog, I’m writing a series about an analogy I wrote back in March of 2008 called You are the Boat, charting a course toward a life worth looking forward to. Each week I’ll write about the different parts of the Boat. Once it’s done, I’m looking forward to making it into a book. Although I don’t know exactly how all of this is going to work out, I have faith that this is what I’m supposed to be doing.
I started the beginning of the year with the Ship’sWheel/Heart, followed by the Captain/Guide, the Rudder/Attitude, the Captain’s Office/Mind and then the follow-up Embrace the place where life happens, and then the Keel/Responsibilities. Last week I wrote about the Crew/ Your people and this week it’s time for the Sail/Soul, the Mast/Strength and the Ropes/Self-Discipline. I’m writing this post about 3 parts because I realized they’re all part of a system and it wouldn’t make sense to break it up. Thanks for reading along!
Looking at a sailboat off in the distance, the first thing you notice is the Sail. Filled with wind, the Sail carries the Boat toward it’s destination, just like your Soul wakes you up in the morning and carries you through the day.
The energy that fills your Sail and moves you, that Spirit comes from within YOU. (When I first wrote this, I thought it was luck, but by sticking with it and writing about it, I’ve learned differently. I’m still learning from this analogy, that’s why I love it so much!!)
Feelings like faith, hope, love, peace, courage and joy fills our Sails, and feeds our Souls! We can feel and use that power to propel us toward our goals! (remember, your crew has a lot to do with this, as well)
When dissappointment, anger, fear, guilt and shame steals the wind from our Sails, we’re left feeling hopeless, drifting along, surviving, but certainly not thriving. In order to thrive, we need Strength.
The Mast symbolizes Strength. If the Mast gets broken, the Sail has no way to catch the wind, and the Boat will just drift. Our Strength supports our Soul. That’s why it’s important to be strong and maintain our Strength so that our Soul can take us where we’re supposed to go.
“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.”Arnold Schwarzenegger
Going through hardships and not surrendering takes Self-discipline.
Ropes (or halyards, my Dad told me that this is their proper name) symbolize Self-discipline.
Ropes are needed to harness the energy in the Sail. Without Ropes, the Sail will just flap and once again, the Boat will just drift along.
So, I asked my Dad what happens when you pull on the ropes. He said “You go faster.”
Of course, this makes sense. The more disciplined we are focusing on what we’re supposed to be doing, the faster we’ll sail towards our goals.
Let me tell you a quick story…
When I was a kid, my family would go camping every summer up at Lake Almanor in Northern California. One day, my Dad took me and a girlfriend of mine out sailing . We were having a great time when somehow, I ended up sitting on one of the ropes. When we went to make a turn, the sail caught the full force of the wind but because it was too rigid (from me sitting on the rope), it flipped the boat over, throwing us all over board. Fortunately, we were all wearing life-jackets. Daddy swam down and released the ropes so that he could pull the boat back up-right. Although we were shaken up and scared, nobody was hurt and that day became one of those stories we talk about when we’re all together! (I love you Daddy xoxo)
What I’m trying to tell you, my friendly blog reader, is this….
We need to stay disciplined and focused on our goals, but not to the detriment of who and what is most important to us. Sure, pulling on the ropes makes the Boat go faster, but if we’re too rigid, we’ll tip over and everyone we love will get thrown out of the Boat. Our self-discipline should be something that helps us and our crew to live happy, fulfilling lives.
Life’s a journey, not a destination.
The best we can do is to find the ‘flow’, the place where we’re heading in the right direction, doing what we’re supposed to be doing with the people we’re doing it with. Not rushing, not forcing….. flowing…..
“By recognizing graciousness, kindness, generosity and bravery, we discover the power to create a better future is contained in the present moment.”
This is a really great place to stop……take a break……. get a drink of water and a snack.
Go ahead…….I’ll wait………..
Getting to share this with YOU is what makes it really special!!
I truly love having you as part of my crew!! xoxoxo
Knowing that you’re there……………..enjoying what I do…………. feeds my soul.
Which is what this blog post is really about.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. We ask ourselves ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.” Marianne Williamson
For instance, what matters to me is… a happy family, good friends, healthy body, a fulfilling career and fun hobbies.
So, my friendly blog reader? What matters most to you? What feeds your soul?
Before I finish up here, I’d like to share one last thing with you.
Last year, when my darling husband left to work in Israel for 4 months, I was nervous. He was going to be gone all winter, which meant I would need to take care of most everything myself. So, in order to make myself feel better, I sat down and wrote out a list that I hoped would help keep us sailing in the right direction.
Later, I realized I was using it to Chart a course toward a life worth looking forward to.
1) Desire a sense of possibility. (What is your heart’s desire?)
2) Encourage compassion and accountability. (Start with yourself.)
4) Make it simple and small until it’s do-able. Remember, your feelings won’t last forever. Sometimes the best you can do is hold on for 5 minutes and just keep swimming, just keep swimming...
5) Recognize enjoyment. Savor the good stuff, because that’s what joy is made of.
My friendly blog reader, I sincerely hope this has helped you.
I’d love to hear what you think in the comments!
p.s. I’ll be back next Monday with the Inspirational song of the week. In the meantime, I’m going to go read Poke the box by Seth Godin.
p.p.s. Go check out Rachel McDonald’s blog about how to become a Soul Woman.
p.p.s. For an absolutely scrumptious way to start your day click this link and listen to Goddess Leonie. xoxoxo