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why you’re not who you probably think you are

Doesn’t really seem like something I could know about you, but stick with me on this one.

“Who we are” can be one of the most formless concepts there is.

“I’m….

 a bus driver,

a parent,

an amateur wrestler,

a bird watching enthusiast,

a kid at heart.”

These are all entirely valid responses. But, what if there really was only one true answer?

Love.

Chances are, hopefully, that you’re here because you maybe kinda think that, too. You may not be fully buying it right now, but you’re thinking about it and that’s wonderful.

Common responses I get whenever I’m fortunate enough to speak about the idea of “being Love” are, “oh, that’s not me,” and “I’m not that person” or “I can’t do that.” As soon as I hear this, my inner voice just shouts, “IT’S NOT TRUE! DON’T THINK THAT!”

So, why is it our default to think that way? Why do we think we don’t have the ability to be Love?

“If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.” – Henry Ford

It’s a pretty simple concept. However, simple doesn’t always, if really ever, equate to easy. If we think we can’t be Love, then we can’t. But, if we think that’s why we’re here, that’s who we are meant to be, then we will be. Simple. Not easy.

On January 24, 2013 I made a very rare (at the time) facebook status update which read the following:

“Positive thinking is contagious. Take a minute to write something positive about yourself. ‘I make people laugh’ or ‘I have a great winter mitten collection’. Chances are, those who know you will agree. At the very least, say it to yourself. That’s how change happens.”

These were two responses I received:

            “Is this our Jimmy?”

            “Someone for sure hacked his account.”

I can’t even begin to tell you how grateful I am for these comments. Were these people off base about me? Not a chance. Those comments are very much in line with who they thought I was, back then. And, why did those people think that of me? They only thought of me what I thought of myself.

As much as those two people were surprised to read that positive post by me; the people that I’ve newly met within the last two years would be just as surprised to know me as anything but those words I shared on facebook that particular day. So, what’s changed?

THINK.

I don’t mean for you to “think”. What I mean is that, what’s changed, is the way I think. It’s not that I’ve changed who I am, it’s just that I’ve changed who I think I am. I know that my job here is to be Love in every opportunity and relationship that presents itself in my life. I know that it’s something that’s inside each and every one of us. It doesn’t require us to change who we are, but to just change how we think about who we are.  

You don’t need to fully embrace the idea that you’re here to be Love as soon as you’re finished reading this. A lot of the time, I’m not Love at all. But, I’m giving myself a chance and know that it will be a lifelong journey. It’s something that will get easier and easier, but it’s also something that requires work.

No one’s asking you to shout it from the mountaintops (although, that would be great). Let’s just start by knowing that we can be Love instead of thinking, “I’m not that person” and “I can’t do that”.

You ARE that person and you CAN do it.  

be Love.

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Love: 101

Be a silent force of Love.

You don’t have to move mountains or cross oceans. You don’t have to work miracles or lead the masses. You don’t have to change the world. By changing yourself, the world will change for YOU.

Offer a blessing of Love to everyone you encounter. Family, friend, stranger and foe; EVERYONE. Offer them all a blessing of Love from your Heart. You needn’t say or do anything. Just open up to the Love that is already in your Heart for every person that is part of your life. Let every person you interact with be your reminder to give them a blessing of Love. When someone smiles at you; remember to offer them silent Love. When someone gives you hug; hug them with your silent Love. When someone frustrates you; REALLY send them your silent Love. By reading this, by introducing this idea into your consciousness, you’ve already started the assignment.

By giving, you will receive.

No one needs to know what you are doing. No one needs to know about your assignment. Go about your day with this Love in your Heart, offering it in as many opportunities as you can. Your experience will be your affirmation that you can create change. You are a silent force of Love.

“You must be the change you want to see in the world”

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

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50 shades of Love

Recently, I was asked, “do you think there are different kinds of Love?” Immediately, I thought, “great question”, followed by, “yes” – sort of.

We hear the word “Love” all the time; “I Love this song”, “I Love shawarma”, “I Love lamp” and “I Love you”. But, what do we really mean? And, when do we really mean it? We “Love” a lot of things that are as easily forgotten as they are remembered. Ultimately, the existence, or lack thereof, of those things won’t compromise who you are or how you live. In a month’s time, you might like another song or find a new place to eat. It’s surface stuff.

But, what about the not-surface stuff? The Love we show for others? We Love our parents differently than we Love our significant other, than we Love our friends or our teammates. There are enough derivations that we almost need an instruction manual.

The Love most of us experience on a daily basis is a wonderfully beautiful emotion. In any form, Love can possess immense power. It gives us hope, inspiration, joy and a sense of purpose. Love makes us feel good. It also makes us feel bad. This is the Love that often comes with conditions. We need our partner to Love us back. We Love our best friend until they disagree with us. We Love our parents, sometimes, just because they’re our parents. A person we “Love” can quickly become a person we don’t. Love based on expectation and contingency has the ability to exert a gripping power over us.

Don’t get me wrong, I believe that this embodiment of Love is an amazing phenomenon. It gives us unparalleled strength. It’s just that, for as much strength as it can give us, we are also vulnerable to having that strength taken away from us.

The truth in my Heart is that I know there is only one kind of Love – pure Love. Pure Love is not in you, it IS you. It’s the Love you give no matter what. It doesn’t come with prospect or hope of reciprocity. It doesn’t gush over lust or dwell upon disappointment. It’s simply an unwavering force that has no beginning and no end. Pure Love doesn’t know any boundaries. It’s infinite.

Love is blind.

An idiom that couldn’t be more true. Pure Love IS blind. It doesn’t know your name, or your age, or your job. It doesn’t know where you come from, the colour of your skin, or what faith you practice. It doesn’t know what you’ve done or haven’t done. It’s just Love. It sees everyone, and everything, the same – as an opportunity to be an uncompromising and unrelenting power. It’s a power of the most humble expression. It’s not something to be exerted on others or held to any standard; it’s a brilliance that we can all shine from.

Pure Love is the “no strings attached” Love, it’s the “Love your enemy” Love and it’s the “no matter what you do to me; you can’t take the Love away from me” Love. It’s the Love that Mother Teresa, Gandhi and Jesus lived. Because none of those people are any different than you or I, it’s a testament that it’s a Love that we can all live.

Be the Love that is you. You have opportunity each and every moment of each and every day. Let go of thinking about what Love can get you and understand what Love can give you. The Love you offer and the Love you receive is dependent upon only you. This is the foundation of pure Love. This is YOU.

be Love.

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