“If I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with.”

? L Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Last week while talking with a friend she commented on how much she loved being able to watch me grow and process the emotional traumas and lessons from my life. She said that she didn’t know anyone else who worked so hard and committed daily to self reflection. This brought me to tears because it is true, I have fully committed to a life of reflection. Not only for my benefit but so I can share my lessons and be more of an authentic teacher.

As part of my process, I observe not only my thoughts but the actions of those around me. I watch as they process and learn or not learn. I see them struggling with committing to do the work, I see them looking for bandaids to quickly shore up the leaks and I see them looking outwardly for answers to the pain and questions they have within. I watch and I know that until they are ready to commit, there is nothing I can do but let them struggle; so I wait and I learn.

For me it isn’t a matter of waiting for the right answers to find me, or finding the time to work on myself. I make this reflection time a priority and when I experience an insight or learn lessons, I take action on them. That is living an authentic life, and standing in my authentic power. If I saw these lessons and put off doing the work to heal and make corrections I wouldn’t be living with integrity to myself, and integrity is one of my core values. Seeing the lesson is one thing, taking the next step through your fears is where courage comes in.

Our mind is incredibly powerful and unlimited in its ability to learn and change. This means no matter what your life looks like at the moment, there is time and space for you to reflect. There is no need to go on vacation, to join the monks or build a perfect reflection space. You have the ability to multitask, doing the dishes, walking the dog or working out at the gym. No matter what your life is built of, you have the time to reflect, learn, take action and grow.

My process happens when I drive, when I walk, when I am in the shower. I open myself to the lessons, I let go of the attachment to what I think I “should” learn, I accept the lesson present- ed and then I take action on what comes through.

So ask yourself, what lessons or wounds am I avoiding? What places have I put bandaids on in hopes they will just heal? What stories am I telling myself that stop me from taking responsibility for my life?

Life happens for you, not to you. All of your experiences thus far have been gifts to learn. Every experience you have today and tomorrow are specially wrapped just for you. The choice is yours. What will you do with them?