What kind of wake do you want to leave behind?…
What kind of wake do you want to leave behind?… After a disastrous week in Queensland and Northern New South Wales, I write this newsletter to reflect on life and the trail of destruction left in the wake of Cyclone Debbie… We lost power for 12 hours and other than a small battery operated am radio, we had no outside communication for 24 hours (I knew it would come in handy sometime We couldn’t go to work because of roads flooding. But we were the fortunate ones!… Those up North directly hit by Debbie and those South of us are still reeling from her wrath. We are in Burrum Heads just North of Hervey Bay and we were fortunate that Debbie only touched us as she made her way South to create more havoc on the way. The last few days the sun has been shining, as I count my blessings and send heart-felt thoughts to the Souls who are only now beginning to count the cost, in the wake that Debbie left behind…
So I’m sitting here considering a ‘wake’. The turbulence in the water left behind by a boat or a jet ski – it’s impact felt all the way to the waters edge… Or the wake after a storm, the clear path of destruction it leaves behind. The water behind a boat or jet ski will smooth out quickly and the experience will be one of fun, yet easily forgotten. But the wake of a storm can leave a trail of destruction and painful scarring for many. So I sit and reflect on my own past actions and wonder how the wake of my own attitude may have impacted on others or on our atmosphere. Was it a positive effect, leaving others inspired enough to change themselves? Did I leave my environment peaceful, fresh and calm? Or was it a negative impact, where I may have evoked resistance in others? Did I fill the atmosphere with animosity, anger or uncertainty?… When I leave a place, will others miss me or will they be glad to see the back of me? Do they look forward to see me or do they avoid me?… Whether intentional or unintentional, to leave others in the wake of our own pain or destructive behaviour, is an act rarely forgotten. To leave a trail so shattering that it contributes to the world’s problems has to come back to bite us sometime, somewhere. If we want a positive boomerang effect then we must put positive out there, and contribute to the solution. No matter how uncomfortable it makes us feel we must make the change that we wish to see in the world because to live in denial or ignorance helps no-one.
How often do we genuinely stop to check our own attitude and consider the feelings of others? Especially when times are tough? Not just when we feel guilty or when we have an agenda, but as a way of life – every single day. How many of us actually stop to think about our own attitude on a regular basis, as a means to change ourselves and ultimately our lives, and help others? To pause long enough to see and acknowledge the wake, the ripple effect we each create in the world around us. Everyone leaves some kind of wake, you know, some kind of trail – no-one is immune to it. After all, we live in physical bodies, on a physical plane, doing physical actions, which must leave a physical trail. Do we accept our own trails, our own footprints – be it turmoil or be it joy? Living in denial of hurting others or not giving ourselves a pat on the back every now and then, are equally destructive and can leave a painful wake behind. As with our roads (and our seas and our skies) storm warnings come with certain rules to keep us safe. Life is no different in that each of us are bound to both moral and spiritual laws (responsibilities) as a means to live in peace and harmony with each other. But with so much self-entitlement-driven behaviours today, it proves difficult to look in the mirror and say ‘I am responsible’. And though it’s freeing to give ourselves permission to do so, most choose to blame as an easier alternative. Self-victimisation is everywhere, it doesn’t take a genius to figure that one out. That’s not to judge others but to use our power to discern. To recognise but not buy into someone else’s opinions or rubbish because once we’ve bought it, we own it! Sadly, most haven’t stopped long enough to realise that deep down they believe that someone, somewhere is to blame for their misery. That someone, somewhere owes them something. Interestingly, they will rationalise and justify their own actions to the very end. So lets be kind to each other because we’re all carrying a load. How we carry it is up to us…
If we allow ourselves to dream and wonder about what kind of life we can create for ourselves, and what kind of wake we would like our lives to leave behind – we may just try something different – something more positive and uplifting. I’m sure no-one wants to leave a negative imprint behind – at least, not intentionally. So then, lets ensure the wake we leave behind us (the trail our actions carve out for others) is a positive and uplifting one. One that we will feel honoured to say, I did that… So today is a good day to start because it’s never too late. In fact, today is a new day. Today is another chance to change
Question: When I am doing or saying – do I consider other people’s feelings? Do I think about how it may hurt them?
Consideration: How do I want to be remembered?… When I leave somewhere, do people feel encouraged, supported and validated? Or do they feel drained, exhausted, relieved? Do they look forward to seeing me? Will they miss me? Do they avoid me?
Action: Before taking any action – stop, breathe and consider the needs and feelings of others. If we don’t stop and breathe we won’t be able to think about others because we’ll be driven by compulsion – telling ourselves ‘I can’t help it, it’s the way I am’. It also helps to think of 3 things you’re grateful for, every single day!…
I am grateful for a hot shower and food in the fridge.
I am grateful for my creative flare.
I am grateful for a partner who keeps working on himself, spiritually.
What 3 things are you grateful for today?
Lots of love Annemarie