Greater Possibilities = Removing Obstacles

My beautiful pictureHow many road blocks have you met while attempting to accomplish your dreams or even during the simplest tasks of the day?

Case in point. I just attempted to write this post without my glasses. Not being able to see properly is an obstacle that makes the enjoyable tedious, not to mention that it creates head aches and much more. But my eyesight obstacle is something I knew right away to fix—to remove. I retrieved my glasses (which by the way I love the look of with their bit of bling at each side, which is odd because I am so not a blingy person) and voila, no more squinting, and the joy of writing immediately returns.

But what obstacles aren’t we seeing? Aren’t we removing to better able us to achieve our end goal?

Currently my husband and I are undergoing a landscaping task of enlarging our pond. Anyone who knows ponding knows that this is no simple task. It requires the dismantling of the existing pond, heavy rocks and all to lift the old liner, excavate further out, and then lay a new underlay and liner.

Obstacle #1: Fifty-year-old bodies not used to such arduous labour (heavy lifting and digging clay) need help! So, as we began lifting the patio stones surrounding our current 500-gallon capacity pond, I was questioning who we could hire to help with rolling back the big rocks from the site and aid us in digging out the extension. We had already ruled out hiring a landscaping firm as the quotes we received last year were astronomical, and let’s face it, doing it yourself has way more benefits. Talk about cultivating an abundant life, this pond enlargement is it! There will be plenty of cultivating happening as we more than quadruple its size, and the accomplishment in designing and putting the labor in to make this pond a living, breathing, healthy environment for our koi and for our souls to meditate and pray near is abundance to my heart.

Okay, back to finding help. Has your neighbour’s boy grown? That’s one person to hire which we plan to pursue. How quickly our kids grow, and so do our neighbours’ children. If that doesn’t pan out then we’ll be asking him if he knows of someone interested in earning money this April. We’ll keep asking around as we drive shovel into clay and remove one clump at a time in achieving our goal, as regardless of when we find help, we will be hands on as well.

May 29 Start of New PondObstacle #2: Design limitations. This is the big one that made me think of obstacles versus possibilities in the bigger picture. So often we limit our possibilities due simply to obstacles. Obstacles that don’t necessarily have to be in the picture.

When I think of the overwhelm I feel on a day-to-day basis, I’ve come to understand that it’s the obstacles of stuff, way too much stuff, that feeds that overwhelming feeling that eats at me and sends my mind and spirit spinning in a downward spiral. The obstacles I must remove are the accumulation of unnecessary things that fill every storage bin and corner of our basement and closets. I’m working on de-cluttering, but that’s for another post.

Well, this indoor clutter extends to our landscape. We have a sixteen-year-old apple tree next to our pond. The birds love it and I love the beautiful pink flowers in the spring when it blooms. So, as we were designing how we could extend our pond, we kept this tree in mind and its massive root system, and we also had to keep our underground electrical and gas lines in mind for boundaries of where we could not dig. That left us with limited space and not enough to reach our goal water capacity for this new pond. For various reasons, the underground piping had to stay. But the tree? The tree that drops apples in bushels each fall only for me to rake up and put in our compost, the tree that we constantly must trim back as it impeaches on our neighbour’s yard and wacks me in the face while doing pond maintenance, the tree that is too high to spray with diatomaceous earth so that we can even eat the apples it produces—that tree in all its beauty and all its overgrownness—could go.

No, it’s not an easy decision. We planted that tree the first year we moved into this house and I really do love it. But if I’m being honest, its outgrown its space. We will plant another tree nearby that will hopefully produce fruit to share with our feathered friends, a smaller version that I can reach to spray with diatomaceous earth so it can produce clean, healthy fruit, and in the mean time, I have filled our gardens with gooseberry plants, grape vines, goji berry vines, junipers, blueberries, current bushes, and tons of nectar rich flowers over the years that will support our winged friends through this transition. And in the end, we will be able to excavate a 3500-gallon capacity pond for our koi and resident frogs, which the birds will also benefit from.

So, what obstacles are holding you back from achieving your dreams? Do they really have to? Does the benefit of removing the obstacle outweigh the loss? Life is full of decisions; may you make one today that opens doors and windows into your tomorrow of an ever-growing abundant life.

Forever becoming me,

Eileen

 

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Privilege versus Abundance

Dare I say that if you’re able to read this post in the comfort of your own home, or on your mobile phone in an aromatic coffee shop, then you, like me, are blessed with a privileged life. Praise be to God for us being given so much in a world where people still struggle to find clean water within reasonable distance of their “home”.

But privilege does not abundance make.

Abundance, to me, is the existence of peace, fulfillment, purpose, kindness, respect, drive, motivation, spiritual wellness, and a deep appreciation of rest. I want to work through my days with an end goal in the works, and with many mini goals being ticked off sporadically throughout the day. So that when my husband pulls his car into our garage each evening, after a day of working his brilliant brain to the max, I too can feel as though I’ve earned these hours of rest. Rest for recovery with a quiet excitement uninhibitedly lingering deep within, knowing round X tomorrow is going to be equally as fulfilling.

Abundance does not require privilege. But sometimes privilege impedes a life of abundance.

So how do we get there from here? How do I cultivate an abundant life? In many areas I am naïve, very seriously naïve. But I’m not naïve enough to think that I can just change my habits and turn my current existence with all its mundane chores (that by the way will still need to be done) into a life full of purpose with excitement and determination that drives my day forward. Habits will be modified. But perhaps most importantly, I’ll need to find new perspectives as well.

IMG-20150623-00819Instead of dropping my shoulders as I scour and scrub the daily pots and pans, I’ll straighten my posture, scrub away WHILE contemplating a dream and if I want to make it into a goal, or I’ll prep my next day’s task list in my head, or I’ll pray for a dear friend, or I’ll put the phone on speaker and touch base with my aging parents, … or I’ll look out my kitchen window and lift praises for the birds that come to our feeders, for the flowers that bloom, for the koi that nibble on the water hyacinths sending ripples across our small pond’s surface. Sounding a lot like multitasking? Yes, but perhaps acknowledging that as one key, along with a positive perspective will turn the mundane into the mini goal of existence that we can proudly tick off of our list knowing we did good works today.

Cultivating an Abundant Life is a process, but if you’re like me and need to be motivated by progress, pull out a notebook, pad of paper, or a daily planner if you like, and grab a pen, now jot down at least five things you want to accomplish today. Me, I’m writing down, clean dishes in sink and clear kitchen counter top, dismantle guest room bed to be moved downstairs, put a load of laundry on, pick up blood draw requisition from Naturopath, educate myself on WordPress so I can post aesthetically appealing and purposeful posts that will hopefully serve not only me well, but also those who read them. Cross each item off your list at completion. If you finish early, add some more. If one task took longer than expected and now you’re left with an item or more still to do and no energy or time, HURRAY, you’ve got the start to tomorrow’s list already at your fingertips. Rest for rejuvenation knowing you’re cultivating an abundant life one task at a time with purpose.    

Forever becoming me,

Eileen