Toss It In The Bin

Here’s an old question that I used to ask in workshops and retreats: what if nothing in you is broken? What if nothing in you needs to be fixed? It jumped out of the archive of my mind today as I clean my house literally and figuratively. I am revisiting the eras of my life and the geography of my growth path. I am also having conversations with people who carry the assumption that they are broken or somehow missing a piece of themselves. They are seeking wholeness, which is another way of saying that they are seeking themselves.

Where is wholeness to be found?

I spent entire decades of my life looking for the missing pieces only to discover – as we all do – that nothing was lost. The moment I stopped trying to meet other people’s expectations, trying to fulfill obligations that were not mine to fulfill, taking responsibility for feelings that were not my own, I discovered that I had all of my pieces. They were there all along. I was looking for my wholeness in other people’s eyes so no wonder I couldn’t see myself clearly! I was looking in the wrong direction.

Wholeness is not something we lose. Wholeness is something we lose sight of. Focusing on meeting other’s expectations blinds us to our own expectations. Taking responsibility for how other’s feel distracts us from taking responsibility for our own feelings. I only have one obligation and that is to realize my wholeness in the actions I take everyday. Wholeness is a practice, not an outcome.

So, as I unpack my boxes and sweep the space beneath the stairs, I smile at an old version of me that carried a broken belief so was consequently invested in finding all the missing pieces. Like a decades old birthday card, I remember it but have no attachment to it. I tossed it into the bin with all of the other out-of-date sentiments.

For a humorous look at the wonderful world of innovation and new ventures, check out my new comic strip Fl!p and the gang at Fl!p Comics.

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