Occupy Your Life

I woke up the other morning and promptly forgot the dream I’d had the night before. This usually happens to me. I am not one of those people who dream and remember in detail everything about the dream and then have some amazing insight from which a monumental problem is then solved.

No, my dreams are filled with my daytime anxieties. Often, I do feel calmer about them when I wake up though. This time it was different. Later in the day, I remembered that in this dream a man (not identifiable to me) handed me a yellow sticky note with the words, “Occupy your decision.” I remembered nothing else about this dream and I have to say, I could not relate this note to any of my daytime anxieties. I opened my mind to the possibilities and kept exploring.

Some of the ways I thought about this yellow sticky note: What decisions have I made recently? If it were a soundbite, what would it be? What do I feel indecisive about? What decision have I made that I might need to re-evaluate? Is there a decision I made that I need to re-commit to?

After giving some thought to this mysterious yellow omen, I could see how my unconscious was directing me to think about some of my recent commitments, some old commitments and how they relate to my way of being in the world.

Decision making is emotional business. During the past few years, scientists have made advancements in what we know about our conscious and unconscious mind. What they have found is that most of our thinking happens in our unconscious - far more than was originally believed.

In a book I am reading, the author says there is a revolution in consciousness. And that, our unconscious is not something to be conquered in order for us to make wise decisions. He says, “it is an emotional and an enchanted place.” Isn’t that cool! He goes on to say, “If the outer mind hungers for status, money, and applause, the inner mind hungers for harmony and connection—those moments when self-consciousness fades away and a person is lost in a challenge, a cause, the love of another or the love of God.”

And there it was. That sticky note was my unconscious telling me that if I want to live fully with intention and mindfulness into the commitments I am passionate about, my actions have to match what is in my heart and feed my soul. We all spend lots of time doing the stuff that has to get done - cleaning, grocery shopping, grass cutting, paying bills, purging the inbox - while these are not drudgery, they do not feed my soul.

If I am going to occupy my commitments, I have to give them time and space in my life. I have to give them a place of honor in my routine. For me, that usually looks like staying on the edge of my comfort zone, not too far in and challenging my running, writing and spiritual self.

Find ways to give voice to all the parts of yourself. Know what matters to you and live from there. As I have said before, what we value is where we spend our time, energy and money.

So, do you value that decision by spending time, energy or money and if not, you are not occupying your decision - whatever it is. Now, either adjust the commitment or occupy!