There’s a place where you sit that feels very good. It’s comfortable, safe and you feel secure when you’re there.
You can do what you like when you’re sitting in that chair and no matter what someone says, it’s easy to stay comfortably enthroned on it. It’s your ‘comfy chair’ and it secures your place in the world.
I’ve got my favourite chairs and sitting spots in our home. There’s the chair in the room where I teach that I sit in every morning to meditate.
There’s another in the living room - my hubby in his chair on one side of a table and me on the other. Just like the lovely couple in the movie Up. It’s nice and it feels good.
But metaphorically speaking, sitting in that ‘comfy chair’ in your life - that’s not so good.
There were times when I jumped right out of my ‘comfy chair’ - and not in a small way. I did it when I discovered that rules had changed and that it was possible to finish my Bachelor of Arts degree at a third university - which you couldn’t do when I tried in 1984.
I started my university studies in 1975; I graduated on the Deans List 29 years later in 2004 - the same year as my son graduated with his degree.
I did it when I had the idea to consider purchasing our glass business in 2004; if you’ve read my About page, you know what happened there.
I definitely got out of my comfy chair in that instance. No, it didn’t necessarily end well, but I learned many lessons and it set me on this path. Meditation was my salvation.
But it doesn’t have to be so dramatic. There are subtle ways for us to get out of that chair and I would hazard to say that we are most often the better for it.
I was always someone who struggled with small talk and doing things on my own. I wasn’t really comfortable just being by myself.
Maybe it’s a result of being an only child. I’m much better than I was - primarily as a result of getting out of that comfy chair at networking events for my glass business.
When I went to my initial Masters of Wisdom and Meditation Teacher training, I spent a lot of time in the first few days with my lovely retreat partner Sarah.
We had come to know each other through the months of study and flew to California together. It was comfortable and safe.
And then one day she said she hoped it was okay, but she’d been invited to join a few classmates for lunch and wanted to get to know them better; it would be good for us to mingle with the others a bit more. I realized I was either going to be on my own or I needed to find out where others (who I didn’t know as well) were going and invite myself along.
What did I do? In my life I was so used to following the crowd and not really thinking about what I would do if it wasn’t there, I didn’t quite know what I was going to do or how I was going to spend all of that time.
“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” e.e. cummings
So I started to walk and it was beautiful! I followed the sidewalk and went over the bridge that was just above the ocean.
I watched a couple in a park practicing acrobatic headstands and surfers riding the waves. I sat on a bench and took in everything that lay before me.
At that point I didn’t realize I was simply being completely ‘present’ and ‘mindful.’ After that lunch I readily joined new friends, but not because I felt lost.
I came back from that walk with the feeling that I had truly conquered something within myself - and I was proud of it! I could be by myself and just do whatever and it was okay!
I’ve thanked Sarah multiple times for that day. I likened it to a mama bird pushing a baby bird from the nest - encouraging it to try its wings and venture out into the world.
When I first mentioned that analogy to her she felt badly and then realized the beauty in it. That gentle nudge has helped me do so many other things on my own, easily getting up and out of that comfy chair.
It helped me go by myself to my first qigong retreat in Costa Rica without knowing anyone. I was turning 60 a few months later and I purposely requested a single room as a challenge to myself.
Could I stay in that beautiful little wooden house without constantly needing to be where someone else was? It was enlightening to say the least and I enjoyed it!
But the thing is, you have to take the first step.
What do you want to do? Where do you want to go? If it really is something that you want, put your hands on the arms and push yourself up out of that chair!
Maybe you’re lucky and have a Sarah in your life who unexpectedly gives you the little nudge that you didn’t know you needed until it happened. I’ve done it for her too, gently nudging her out of her comfy chair when it comes to technology - and she’s grown in leaps and bounds.
Do it for yourself. See it as a gift - to both you and the world around you. Because when we transform ourselves, when we find our peace, the ripple effect can be un-stoppable.
Hi, Glenda here sharing my thoughts with you. I've discovered that what I really do is help people find more peace in a way that is real-world, practical and accessible to anyone. I'm a Certified davidji Masters of Wisdom & Meditation Teacher, a Reiki Master and facilitator and host of retreats and workshops. I welcome your comments and appreciate you taking the time to read this blog. Don't hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions or would simply like to reach out.