Willing to be Surprised

photo (15)This can be a funny time of year. And not, you know, funny ha ha. Especially for those who celebrate by giving and getting gifts, we often devote so much more time to finding gifts than savoring what we receive – or, imagine this! – what we have. Follow this dance with New Years, which many anticipate by shoring up their resolutions and determining that things will change and, well, it can send many of us far, far away from our bodies.

Resolutions so often involve strengthening our resolve – hardening up around particular goals we want to see, in a future that doesn’t really include the way we look (feel, sound, dress…) today. But what we if we dropped into something a little deeper, a little wider: permission to want what we do, but to know we are enough, also.

Which is why I’m offering something a little different here, inspired by my 85-year-old friend Dot: Let us be willing to be surprised. It sounds simple, but it’s a tricky way of asking ourselves to actually show up, to notice and marvel and wonder. Being surprised means including ourselves in what we see, and it changes the flavor of resolution back to its original intention: to loosen and free.

  • Perhaps we’ll exercise more, and maybe we’ll discover that we actually love walking. Running? Not so much.
  • If we’re looking for health, could we trust our bodies to guide us, and give ourselves permission to listen?
  • Could we allow the width of our hearts to include us, too? And as we’re surprised by what that feels like, could we serve others from abundance, rather than depletion?

For 2014, wishing you health, joy, and the courage to be surprised by your amazing self.