We seem to be hearing a lot these days about a Golden Age, Aquarian Age – an Enlightened Consciousness that is manifesting in our society as it grows and evolves. Are we truly ready for better times? It seems that after living for thousands of years in a linear, consumer-oriented, “Time is Money” and “Conquer the Environment” mentality, we would all need a significant attitude adjustment to live in peace, love, and well-being.
Ideally, as we progress on our path of personal and spiritual growth, life does get easier and more enjoyable both individually and collectively. Still, what I often notice is the energy of struggle. People might be struggling for happiness, understanding, letting go of the past and/or creating a brighter future. When we are in struggle our fearful emotions, negative beliefs, and confused actions produce tension. Is there another approach?
I think there is: Living Lightly. I would define living lightly as a heart-centered approach to life based upon flexibility, humor, factuality, ease, detachment, gratitude, and abundance. How can we create a Golden Age? Here are some techniques and attitudes to Live Lightly.
If you thought the world was solid, hard to change and unpredictable, it would be perfectly logical to seek to forcefully control it. This drive to control is all about creating security. I think what we are seeing is that change and chaos cannot be avoided or controlled. There really is no absolute security. If we are seeking to control, tension shows up when the unexpected happens.
Flexibility is relaxing and going with the flow, expecting the unexpected, and learning and growing from what life brings us. Flexibility loosens things up. In fact, when things go wrong, they might actually turn out right! Things fall apart for a reason. We have all been seeking personal and planetary change, well, now is the time to learn to flexibly live with that. The recent rise and fall of gas prices created much debate. In many ways it has forced us to look at new solutions to create energy in ways that will be cheaper and better for the environment. Energy insecurity is allowing us an opportunity to create a positive outcome out of a seemingly negative situation.
Things can look pretty serious. It seems that every five minutes there is a new sensational problem that we are told by the mass media means life or death for us all! Is this true? It is also very easy to get heavily wrapped up in our own personal challenges. Does that feel good? In some ways, if you step back, you might see the absurdity of it all. There is a time to be serious and a time to be lighthearted.
Here are some questions to ask yourself the next time you find yourself getting concerned about something in your own life: Why is this so serious to me? Why is this so seemingly important? Is it really as bad as it seems? Is there a simple solution? Can I do anything about it? How could this be insignificant in the bigger scheme of things? What could be humorous about this? When we have the awareness to step back, many things are funny. Like slipping on a banana peel or splitting our pants, our challenges and embarrassing social predicaments can be very comical, indeed.
Is there such a thing as an objective, consensus reality, anymore? It seems that life is very subjective. We can interpret things in ways that can scare others and ourselves. What is the tone of your inner and outer communication? Factuality is devotion to factual communication and perception. The opposite can be a wild imagination, an unruly concoction of fantasy, projection, exaggeration and/or judgment. To Live Lightly, observe yourself and outside situations with factuality.
Instead of judgment, tell yourself the facts of what you are seeing. Be aware of your story. We all have a continuous narrative, a mental monologue of who we are, what is happening and how it all fits together. Are you creating a narrative of pain? What are you telling yourself about your experiences? Are you exaggerating the facts or reading too much into things? You can bring yourself back to factuality by catching yourself. “Oh, I see what I am doing. I am creating a story. What are the facts here?” Being factual and objective will lighten things up, considerably.
There is no rule that life is decidedly difficult; that is a belief! Another belief is that living a happy life can be easier, in fact, even more natural, than struggling! The next time you think something has to be difficult, or will be difficult, ask yourself, “How can this be easy? What can I do to make it easier?” It may mean, for example, to simply move and act in a relaxed manner, break a big project down into smaller parts, stop worrying or simply trust that everything is happening in perfect timing. Asking, “Why do I think this will be difficult?” can clue you in on what the belief is. Realizing it is only a belief that may need changing, can open up the way for you to then take a lighter, easier approach.
As individuals we become attached to our possessions, jobs, relationships, and how other people view us. We can think that our stuff – material, emotional and mental, is our true self. Does anything really belong to us? Do our attachments to these things bring us happiness or suffering? If you lost everything tomorrow, could you be happy? Do you have to take things so personally? Remember that what can be lost can be regained and what we have now is only temporary. Living Lightly means knowing that truly, it is all temporary.
Rather than just focusing on what you want to have, or what is missing, you can choose to be grateful. You can be grateful for all the good that is already in your life, as well as the challenges, difficulties and lessons. This can reshape your life experience. Giving thanks opens your heart and mind and creates space for more good things to flow into your life.
One of the major sets of beliefs we are releasing are ones based on lack – lack of time, love, money – everything and anything. It seems like we are always trying to overcome a deficiency, limitation, or scarcity in our lives. Is this true? The next time you feel you do not have something, stop yourself and say “I am now open to receiving ______. I now allow it into my life.” Whatever you want will show up if you keep asking for it. Leave the timing and form up to the universe.
There are many pathways to Living Lightly. Like most things, it comes down to practice. If you pick one or more of these ideas and work with it consistently, you will find greater ease and joy in your life.