Inside: The more we learn to work with instead of against our wiring, life feels simpler (though not necessarily easy), it begins to more honestly reflect the truth of who and how we are, and helps us handcraft a life that feels like home.
I want a life that feels like home.
A brave and beautiful life authentically aligned to my unique wiring, needs, desires, life stage, values, and sense of purpose. I’m not looking for a fairy tale ideal but a life that involves truth-telling, questioning, grappling, coming face to face with the reality of what is, taking responsibility for that which I can control and choosing my response to the rest of it.
Life isn’t static or linear so if we are committed to the idea of building and living a right-sized life, or a life that feels like home, we must live awake, conscious, and intentionally. It will evolve and shift and maybe even morph into something far more beautiful than any of us could have imagined for ourselves at the start.
Handcraft a one of a kind, sustainble, Beautiful Life
Handcrafting a brave and beautiful life asks us to engage all our senses and to integrate our emotional, cognitive, psychological, physical, relational, and spiritual self. We are not a mere collection of parts but an intricate, beautiful, incredibly messy tangle of strength, struggle, story, and longing.
The more we create a life that works with instead of against our wiring, life feels simpler (though not necessarily easy), it begins to more honestly reflect the truth of who and how we are, all the ways we are hurting and gifted and yet in progress and makes space for us to walk forward gently, rooted and on purpose.
This level of self-awareness and self-compassion helps us take imperfect action as we get our hands and heart dirty in building the life we want. It illuminates the path ahead in a way we don’t experience when we’re focused on pleasing other people, trying to keep up or measure up, stumbling and growing weary trying to walk in someone else’s shoes, or comparing ourselves and believing our mean and fearful inner critic when they tell us we are not enough.
At some point each of us finds ourselves in a season in which we are invited (or forced) to let go of all pretense, of clinging to how life used to be or how we thought life would be, to make peace with the life in front of us. Dr. Rick Hanson speaks to the idea of ‘welcoming this life vs fighting against it.’
Crafting a Brave and Beautiful, right-sized life, necessitates space and breathing room for practicing, iteration, listening, slowly becoming. It’s not always a pretty or comfortable process but we have the privilege of saying yes to the adventure anyway.
Saying YES to the fullness of life is a privilege.
This brings me to the idea of finding “a purpose” vs living “on purpose.”
Living On Purpose
A sense of contribution/being engaged with the world or sense of purpose is linked to resilience, mind-body health, and happiness. But when we live overly focused on trying to uncover an elusive “life purpose” we might forget to simply live “on purpose.”
We might feel stuck or like something is wrong with us and fall prey to comparison or feelings of not good enough. Living on purpose is about setting our unique/personalized/one-of-a-kind intentions for who and how we want to be in the world and identifying our core values, and then walking this out, consistently, intentionally – in big and small ways.
So, purpose matters but how we think about it might matter even more.
There is no perfect life – there are many beautiful possible paths, all of them messy.
RELATED: In Search of Simple: Field Notes From Near and Far on Slow Living. Learn more here.
When faced with painful change, loss, or grief, we can challenge our assumption that messy and imperfect equates with bad. Or that different means worse. Sometimes different is simply different.
I feel sad and almost lonely when I come to the end of an amazing book. I wish it could go on forever. I miss the characters I must say goodbye to. But then I pick up another delicious book and become captivated anew. The two stories are not at war or in competition with each other – they simply bring different gifts in season.
Loving the new story doesn’t mean I don’t still love the first.
Our mindset is responsible for much of the way we experience the life in front of us or our emotional reality. We cannot control everything that happens to us and around us but we can recognize that we are strong and brave, we can learn to face fear head-on, we can develop the habit of practicing self-compassion in the middle of the wildest storm.
We can build the mental and emotional muscle and self-trust required to show up every single day with a sense of direction and confidence in our capacity and wisdom to find our way forward.
Painting an honest and beautiful LIFE VISION and then loosening your grip on a precise outcome (because again, you cannot control all of life and surrender to this reality frees up energy for creativity, taking purposeful “imperfect action” and delight) helps you show up fully to each new morning and season of life with joy, on purpose, and open to joyful possibility.
You can handcraft a brave and beautiful life, a “right-sized life” that feels like home.
NOW WHAT? Join me inside the Brave & Beautiful Community. You can deep dive with me and a small group of kind, interesting, growth-minded women into the work of handcrafting a Brave and Beautiful life.