I’ve often thought about how I want to eat in the world, how I want my experience to be, how I wish it could be; but I’ve never thought about how, specifically, I want to behave in the world. Earlier this week, I was prompted to think about it and it’s been a peculiar process. The thing is, in my daily actions, my intentions are to get closer to a life that I want, but the very behaviors that I choose are the exact life that unfolds. My future is a product of my present. Thinking about the way I want to behave unfolds the daily choices in my current behavior that will allow me the life and freedom I seek.
I don’t know if I only have one go here. I don’t know when this lifetime will end. I know my past, but the only chance I have at having a say on the rest of my story- whether it be just for me or for anyone who reads it in the future- is the actions I take and the way I behave in the present moment. I want to behave in a way that satisfies and flourishes in the impermanence of now.
I want to laugh from my core, to never force a giggle, but to allow the moments that spark glee to rumble through my genuine laughter.
I want to be carefully carefree. I want to take chances in a way that respects and values my life. I don’t want to rush into things nor make impulsive decisions, but I also don’t want to hold myself back from changing courses or chasing visions of happiness based on rigid expectations of the routes I or others have determined will otherwise obtain that happiness. I want to be flexible.
I want to be connected. I want to hear my thoughts, I want to acknowledge and address them, but I want to do so by allowing myself to experience the consequential, emotional impacts instead of using further thinking to wrap myself up in a slew of rationalizations and ruminations.
I want to use my connectedness to stay present and experience others. I want to behave in relationship to my surroundings and the people who fill them. I want to hear what people say with clarity rather than through a fog of thoughts that spin in the forefront of my mind. I want to be still enough to listen and react- to be touched by other humans.
I want to be vulnerable. I want to allow myself to risk getting hurt in my venture for peace. I want to see my darkness and know my light. I want to show up with both and live in the reality of the impacts both have on who I am, who I become, and with whom I get to be both with.
I want to behave in alignment with my values. I want to be authentic. I want to dress the way I feel, rather than how I want to feel. I want to notice when I disagree with what’s happening around me and state my opinions. I want to be brave and speak my truth, instead of attempting to shape shift in a desire to please. I want to show others respect and care through this process, and I want to respect and care for myself. I want to heal my fear of abandonment by no longer abandoning myself. I want to act through compassion.
I want to know my faults and flaws and practice acceptance by showing love to the parts of me that cause shame, in place of further burying myself in repentance and damage and the resulting creation of more shame-building actions. I want to break that cycle with love and exist in the warmth of that.
I want to fuel the parts which hold potential for positive growth. I want to feed my passions and share them in ways that bring purpose to each small moment. I want to make the most of the now.
I want to eat to fuel. I want to display to the world what I hope to become and what I wished I’d always known. I want to believe what I know and act on those beliefs. I want to eat what sounds good and allow my body to guide and stabilize me. I want to move in congruence with my soul and let my vehicle become my partner. I want to see that that keeps me safe and allows for survival instead of destruction. With this grace and faithfulness, I want to exhibit the formation of a temple, the construction of what was once just a body to become a place to practice gratitude and surrender for nature and existence. I want to give to myself and model what I desire and admire in others. I want to be kind and let joy in.
I want to know this moment without looking towards the last or the next and accept the limitations and simultaneous endless possibilities of the present- not without fear, but in spite of it. I want to behave on this planet the way I was meant to be, in a way that supports the chance for another moment.
I begin in each moment.