DISCLAIMER: This article was written before all of the current events. I am posting it anyway because it is going to be the foundation for my Sunday talk. I am not in anyway looking away from the affairs of the world. You will hear more from me about all of it.
To say that life is stimulating is an understatement. There are myriads of attention-grasping thoughts and options to distract us from ourselves, our authentic self-expression. Trying to be who you are while not trying to win approval of others takes an abundance of self-love and self-acceptance. Loving yourself as you are and as you are not is an important part of your journey. To identify and develop an ongoing relationship with your NorthStar is built on the ability to Love the “Self” that you are.
Identifying your NorthStar is composed of multiple aspects. It calls for us to articulate: our values, who we want to be in the world, how we want to impact the world and our desired legacy.
My NorthStar supports me in my everyday decisions. For example; as I lay down to take a nap on a lazy Sunday afternoon, after being up early, working for part of the day, exerting my energy in being in service to others, I begin to fall into a sweet afternoon sleep. Suddenly, however, my bedroom door flies open and my enthusiastic five-year-old granddaughter bounds into the room with her innocent question: “Nanna, what are you doing?” Oh yes, the sleep tempted me but what mattered more was moving over, making room for a delightful cuddle.
The mark I etch on my grandchildren’s heart is far more meaningful to me than that afternoon nap. Sliding over to make room for her and her brother, (because he was only a minute behind her) is what matters. As some rocker once said: “You’ll sleep enough when you’re dead.” But to live in their memories, even if it is simply their sense of always being joyously welcomed and loved, is what matters.
There is another well-known question: “Do you want to be right or be happy?” Great question. If happiness is my answer, then it is clear that my NorthStar will guide me to let go of my self-righteousness in relationship with others. Do I want to be in control or in the flow? Do I want to live in the hearts of my family and friends as kind and compassionate or as strong or defiant?
How can you define your NorthStar? Ask yourself some of these questions: How do I want to be remembered? What do I want my legacy to be for people who matter to me? What kind of impact do I want to have in the world? What sings through my heart, my soul?