Drop the Story: The Power of Staying Present

Happy today, Shifter!

Do you know the app WhatsApp? I love it. It allows you to write or record messages to people that they can read or listen to whenever they want. With everyone’s busy schedules, it takes the hassle of scheduling out of the equation because you don’t have to be on the phone at the same time (although there’s nothing like live conversations). You can also create groups so multiple people can be in the same chat.

One of the chat groups I’m in is with two of my amazing girlfriends. We call the group “Downstream” after an Abraham-Hicks concept of allowing yourself to flow downstream in life rather than working so hard to paddle upstream. This group is a place where I can share what’s going well in my life as well as what I need support with. It’s been a saving grace time and time again for me, especially recently while I’ve been traveling and away from so much that is familiar to me.

The cool thing is that for the first time since the three of us became friends over 5 years ago, all three of us are single. Let me tell ya, it makes for some very interesting topics of discussion, as we’re all learning how to navigate the dating scene in a more conscious way than ever before. At times, it’s awesome and we feel ahead of the game. And other times, it feels like we’re teenagers, dating and feeling awkward for the first time ever!

These incredible women always give me such great, high-vibe advice. But there’s something special that happens when we’re all experiencing similar life questions. I learn every time one of them shares a story as I know they learn from me.

And the biggest lesson I’ve learned so far? To drop the story.

Let me explain. We’re all taught from a very young age (thanks, Disney!), that we all have one true love and that our lives won’t be complete until we find them, get married, and live happily ever after.

What I’m starting to see after all these years is that those beliefs create a sense of lack and urgency that have affected me me entire adult life. Whenever I would see or meet someone I’m attracted to, the questions would immediately begin:

  • Is he “the One”?
  • Does he like me?
  • If not, how can I become what he wants?
  • Where is this going?

Maybe you can relate, but I was shocked to realize how pervasive these questions were in my head. And they’d start even if I knew that someone wasn’t really for me. It was like this default setting of crazy that I couldn’t turn off. I’d immediately start concocting a story of our happily ever after...one that usually ignored big pieces of reality in the process.

But now that my girls have made me aware of this (and made me feel better knowing that it wasn’t just me doing it), I’m able to do something about it. Oh yes, the light of consciousness can do so much when we turn it on!

Instead of stories and questions, now my focus is on moments. Whenever I meet someone new, I concentrate on being fully present with them in that moment and enjoy it as much as possible. I am with them, not with some made-up person I’ve created in my mind based on them. I don’t worry about what they’re thinking and I don’t look into the future. And when we part, I don’t dwell on what I could’ve or should’ve said, or where it’s all going. Instead I look for something new and wondrous to focus on.

This practice has worked wonders so far. I feel so much more relaxed and happy. And I know that I’m no longer putting out that needy vibe that guys can feel when someone is looking for another to complete them. Seriously, Jerry Maguire, I loved your movie but that line was such a load of co-dependent crap!

The awesome thing about this shift in my awareness and behavior is that it can be translated to all areas of life. Family, work, friendships - if we put out the vibe that we need something or someone to complete us, we’re always going to feel unfulfilled and unsatisfied. And then who and what are we going to attract? Other unfulfilled people and unsatisfying circumstances. And that’s a chain of pain waiting to happen.

Rather, if we create a feeling of wholeness and contentedness within ourselves, then we attract others who feel complete within themselves and those are the people you wanna be around - the ones who feel joyous, inspiring and magical. It’s as the saying goes, “It takes one to know one.” You gotta do it first to attract it back to you.

What about you? What stories have you created that take you out of the present moment and how do you get back on track? As always, I love to know how you shift yourself in love and in life!

Presently yours,

Emily