This has been a fun journey. Learning myself, loving myself, and choosing joy in the midst of finding wholeness and healing. Being aware of how I am feeling throughout my day to day and season to season has helped me be able to notice when things are off in my life; if my thoughts get out of control, if something was said or done that hurt my spirit or when something would affect my soul. When I am able to know all of that about myself, finding the issue and root cause of my problems is much simpler and allows me to change the situation.
Your spirit is affected by the atmosphere around you, so choosing the places you go and the people in your life is something you want to be aware of. Your soul is what’s affected when deep hurt happens, and when deep joy is created; between friends, family, relationships, and yourself. Broken trust and other deep hurts that cause you to feel misled or wounded will cut into your soul and begin to turn it bitter, whereas precious moments, pure love, and deep trust will fill your soul with greater capacity for love. Your body is affected by whether your spirit and soul have been violated, or whether they are being taken care of and loved. When you really start to learn your body’s responses, you will start to notice whether something has been put off in your soul or spirit, creating a response in your body that isn’t meant to be there.
Based on what I have done, I have some suggestions you could try:
Read. Read many many books. I sought out people who I have seen living wholehearted lives and I asked them what they did that inspired them to live in wholeness. They gave me 1 or 2 names of books or people that have inspired them, which I either got or researched. A lot of these books have challenges throughout them that I get to choose to do as I read them. I don’t like to just read through the book, I like to stop when I find something interesting and underline or circle it, then write down my thoughts next to the section. I also don’t borrow books because of this, I like to buy my own copy and that way I have it to look back on if I need to.
Pay attention to your actions. Be very aware of yourself in everything that you do. Notice how you respond in different situations, (you can even write it down if you process better through journaling) and look for patterns of how you respond. The better you know how you personally respond, the deeper you will get into knowing why you respond as you do so you can work on the root issue instead of just dealing with the symptoms.
Don’t be thoughtless with your words. Really try to understand what you are saying and the affect that it has, while also listening closely to what other people are saying. Words are power; so are thoughts. Be aware of what you allow in your mind and what you are making unknown agreements with. You want to have a powerful thought-life. People that are thoughtless with their words are going to be thoughtless with your heart.
Talk to yourself regularly. If you feel off, ask yourself why, what happened, or what you need. The more you talk to yourself, the more you will understand your being and narrow down if there is a problem in your spirit, soul, or body. Start to ask yourself really good, hard questions and learn the motivations behind your actions. You will begin to trust yourself much much more. Sometimes choosing the hard choice when it feels like the right choice is the best choice. Trust the ‘gut’ feeling you get, because that’s probably your spirit trying to tell you something.
Whatever you believe in, there are parts of you that you don’t understand and that affect different aspects of your being. Try this out, and see how it works for you. If anything, I hope to encourage you to go beyond what you know and find new aspects of yourself that may in fact change how you do life in the future.
The reason for this journey is freedom. Free from haunting thoughts and fear. Free from other peoples hold on your life. Free from judgement, control, and disillusionment. Free in ways you that you can’t believe is reality, but it is. There’s a better way to live. There’s a greater perspective to find, a deeper connection to have, and more authority to have over your life and the lives of the people you influence.
Love always and forever, Makarios
My heart. My world. It’s overcome by people who want a piece of it. There’s a taking that happens all the time—a trespassing into my life that hasn’t been allowed. It’s exhausting for us to live our lives when people are continually taking from us—our emotions, our time, our energy. But guess what, there’s good news. Most of this can actually be avoided! If we allow ourselves to be okay with saying no to people, we can cut down that risk of exhaustion by at least 50%. Sometimes people will continue to take even when we say no. Sometimes that’s unavoidable, but we will never cut that percentage down unless we are actually okay with saying no.
For me, saying no used to be hard, but that was because of fear in my life that said I might lose friends or that said I was being too selfish if I did. I should be aware of everyone’s feelings, right? I don’t want to be rude to people, right? Well here’s a question for you: are we actually valuing ourselves if we allow people to take part of us that we shouldn’t give? People take what we don’t have all the time, and it hurts our souls, our spirits, our bodies, our minds, and the close people in our lives.
Some say we can’t give what we don’t have. Sure we can! We do it all the time. We steal from others to give if we have to, but God forbid we turn somebody down because they want something. Are you hearing me?!? This is what we do. How is that healthy or okay? If they don’t get it from you, they’ll go get it from somebody else. Don’t kill yourself to help someone for a moment, because it really will kill you eventually if you let it. Knowing when to say no stems from an understanding of how well you know yourself, and I hope you are actually applying the stuff I have been saying to your life, because you should know yourself at least a little bit better by now.
It’s all about trial and error. Learn how far you can go, and then stay away from that. Push yourself so you can grow, and then ease up to find a balance. If it hurts, that’s an indicator of when to say no. Balance your life out so that if you know you are crazy busy for a couple days/weeks straight, you know that you will need to say no to some things after that in order to recuperate. This all seems so logical and simple, but so many of us (even me) still don’t do it. We think we can give, and we can! But at what cost? These things really build up, and they have to be let out eventually. It could take years, but trust me, it WILL take its toll at some point. Let’s work to prevent that from happening by cooling off the boiling pot now.
Have accountability to major things you do in your life. (If you need it for smaller things to start out with, that’s fine.) Find a great friend who will ask you how much you’ve been giving of yourself lately, and then listen to them, in order to maintain balance. Don’t be stupid and then keep giving anyway.
Trust your instincts. (NOT THE FEAR ONES; unless there is a specific reason you should trust that.) If you feel you are too tired to go out, or that it will take energy from you and you know you’ve given a lot that day already, be willing to say no. This is a hard one; if you have already made plans with someone that have been set for awhile, but when the day comes and you feel like it would take more than you feel you can give, love yourself enough to kindly and politely say no.
Talk to yourself. Ask yourself every morning how much you feel you have to give that day, and then throughout the day make sure you still have enough in order to enjoyably make it through the time that you have left.
As always, Makarios
So I realize that a lot of you don’t know what I do with my life. In fact, I don’t even know what I do with my life. I just say yes. When opportunities to travel come up, I say yes. When I feel a prompting to do something, I say yes. When a situation is uncomfortable, I still say yes. Though I may have some crazy stories about some of the things I’ve said yes to, I do not regret a moment of it. What I do changes my life and changes the lives of the people I come in contact with.
Just last week I was part of an experience that impacted who I am. I have spent the last month in Santa Barbara, California at an Artist Boot Camp. Let me tell you, it really was a boot camp. There were 3 different focuses at this school (acting, music, & film production) and I was in the acting portion of it. I spent over 5 hours a day in acting class and several more hours doing homework for it. When I wasn’t doing that, I was in sessions with incredible speakers who are changing the world through the arts. It was such a change from “normal life,” being stuck on a mountain with barely any cell service, internet, down time, or sleep, but it was absolutely necessary for who I want to become and what I am working towards.
In my last class with my acting group, we all did a connection exercise that will stick with us forever. It started by pressing hands together in a circle (20 or so of us, with the rest of the camp sitting around the edge of our little class room watching us), and making eye contact with each person in our group. From there we were to move as a group and create a company of actors who breathe and work as one. We did this. In a way that left every person in that room with tears running down their faces. I can’t explain it or do it justice. Without knowing what we were doing, we worked as one, connected with each other, and our final move as a group was holding hands, taking a bow, and clapping for each other. The moment we did this, the music stopped, not a dry eye was in the place, and we ran together for a final group hug, knowing that what just happened was an experience that would forever change us. All because each one of us looked at each other and said yes to the moment.
Even though I haven’t slept in a month, and today is my first day home, saying yes to what I knew was right was the best decision I could have ever made. The people I have done life with this summer from all over the country, the friends I’ve made, the places I’ve been, and what I’ve learned about myself, has impacted my life in ways that will never stop increasing.
I am blessed, blessed, blessed. And I am so incredibly thankful for each person that has been a part a it, and helped me through it. I will never be the same.
I believe in saying no, and I am in the process of writing a post on that too, but right now it’s about saying yes to you, yes to your heart, and yes to others. Go for it, be you, be inspired. There is always a way. Know that, believe that, live that.
If you know you, trust your yes.
Love always, Makari Asriel
My acting track 9’14’15