“You have to be home to receive the message.”
In a not too distant past, just before or after we stepped into the twenty-first century, in order to receive the voicemail or message from a loved one who lived in a distant town, be notified by a business of an order ready to be picked up or any number of communications occurring beyond in-person conversation, we had to be home where a landline was plugged into the wall to receive the message, and even then, we had to set up voicemail, otherwise we’d miss the message altogether unless we were literally in the house to hear the phone ring.
No doubt, being able to bring our voicemail (i.e. smart phone) with us no matter where we are, no longer having to be present at the time of the call or message, liberates us to go where and when we need or would like, and is a benefit as we can remain connected without being hobbled.
However, conceptually, the idea of being figuratively ‘home’ to receive the message is vital to finding an inner calm, a grounding peace of mind and a fulfilling purpose that enables our true self to shine.
The phrase above was expressed during a recent yoga class as we held a pose for a duration of time, reminding the class of the importance of being fully present, right there, in that room, engaged with our breathing, not letting our minds wander to the past or future. To be home in the present moment, fully engaged, and consciously present, not lost in thought, a conscious choice that changes the quality of the life we live today and tomorrow.
What does it mean to be ‘home’?
- To be able at any given moment, wherever you are, gaze about and around you, taking a deep breath and appreciating all that is going well, and with practice of simply doing this exercise, finding more and more to be grateful for. For example: the weather is calm, the house is heated, my health is strong, the health of my children, pets, parents, friends is strong, I have food in the refrigerator, clean water to drink, a job to pay the bills, the birdsong alerting me to spring’s imminent arrival, having a book I enjoy reading, hands that work, the ability to taste food and smell the scent of freshly falling rain. This list could go on endlessly, and the more you are aware of all that is going well, of which you can be grateful, the more you are ‘home’.
- While in the company of one, aka yourself, you find complete calm, peace and the space to clarify your thoughts, understand your emotions and make wise choices to continue to live well. With the skills you’ve learned through critical thinking, simple awareness, and emotional freedom, you have built a toolbox that cultivates a home within yourself.
- The knowledge that when things don’t go as we might want, that in fact, such events are offering us something we need to help us on the path we wish to travel. Refraining from blaming or throwing a ‘fit’ whether internally or externally, we know that there is something we are being given that is valuable in this moment we would rather not have to experience; however, something that when we choose to find the lesson is what we need to absorb and apply will enable us to move forward as we wish. We know that the sooner we realize the lesson, heed it and apply it, the less likely the lesson will be repeated or increase in its intensity when it has to arrive again because we refused to learn the first time it presented itself.
- You have built a toolbox tailored to what you know will nourish your well-being. Through activities, practices and pastimes, you know what fuels you and regularly tend to your internal and mental nutrition. As you become more knowledgeable of yourself, this practice is preventative rather than responsive. Whether spending regular time in nature; making time to share a meal/walk/drink/etc. with a loved one where you both lift each other up and support each others journey, perhaps not even through direct conversation but by simply being in each others’ company, the energy that is exchanged when you depart each others’ company energizes you, rather than drains you, and you for them; scheduling enough social time and/or responsibilities but not too many in order to maintain healthy energy levels and not become overwhelmed, burned out and drained; creating a bedtime ritual to cultivate a regular deep night’s sleep;
- This toolbox concept is discussed in detail in TSLL’s 2nd book: Living The Simply Luxurious Life: Making Your Everydays Extraordinary and Discovering Your Best Self (see below)
The Benefit of Finding Our ‘Home’
When we find and know how to be ‘home’, we paradoxically liberate ourselves from being tethered as the analogy grabs from the concept of the landline telephone. When we have consciously done the work of knowing ourselves, how to honor ourselves, but also connect lovingly with others, we have a grounding confidence that travels with us wherever we may go. We know how to translate the feelings that may arise in new situations. We know that fear while it can cause stress, is also something to investigate as it usually indicates something valuable to our journey, and knowing how to travel with it, learn from what it wants to reveal and/or teach us, will actually enhance our journey and thus lessen our stress.
It is when we don’t know where ‘home’ is that decisions are made that don’t contribute to a life of inner calm, taking us in the wrong direction and leading us away from our true selves. And if we have ever felt unmoored in this way, we know how unsettling it can be. You can never quite find your footing. You can never quite feel a deep calm even if the world is swirling (with true contentment this is possible). You can never rest easy knowing that while you haven’t reached the goals you aspire to attain that you are headed in the right direction and will arrive eventually because you aren’t confident where you are headed is where you want to go.
The good news, as many of us all know who prior to finding our home went down an unhelpful path, the ‘home’ we seek is always there; we just need to choose to extend the conscious effort to find it. To gather up the courage to admit, this isn’t where I can be fully me and bravely turn around or face another direction and begin the necessary work so that we do receive the messages that will provide the ‘directions’ we didn’t have previously. That is why we must be home. We must be home so that we receive the aha moments, we receive the inner guidance that seems to know the way, that has always been inside of us. Our curiosities, when we heed them have a gifted way of knowing what will align with our true selves even if we don’t have all of the information yet, but we have to be ‘home’ to receive the message. And we find our home by investing in ourselves, investing in cultivating the skills mentioned in the above list, and being patient as well as courageous.
So to simplify: What is gained by finding our ‘home’?
- A peace with not knowing, a comfort with uncertainty that up until now you may have thought was impossible or farcical.
- A deep trust in yourself, a self-assurance you can return to during times that temporarily unsettle you.
- The skill-set (the well-stocked toolbox) to cultivate a ‘home’ of activities, people and daily routines and rituals that nourish you rather than drain you.
- A feeling of calm and inner peace.
- The ability to know how to return to your grounding space when temporarily you recognize you are off-balance, and why it happened.
- A feeling of deep, everyday true contentment.
- Lastly, but most importantly, when we find and reside in our ‘home’ we receive the messages that deepen our awareness about what truly fulfills us, what is worth stepping toward even if we don’t know how it will work out, and we gain clarity as we have never experienced before.
The journey to our ‘home’ which will be unique to each of us, must be made consciously, because even if we are residing in our ‘home’ but are not consciously aware of all that nourishes us and enables us to feel calm, much like a child who depends on the parent to care for their needs, we will not understand or know to ‘tune in’ to listen for the messages. We will not know how ‘the bills are paid’ so to speak. It is when we are knowledgeable of all that enables us to feel nourished that our gratitude deepens and as our gratitude deepens, we actually stop ‘wanting’ and instead savor, a practice that holds us in the present. And it is when we are present that we are living consciously, something that is at the core of living a life of true contentment.
As someone who, like many of us I suppose, knew ‘home’ as a child, but didn’t fully understand why it was ‘home’, lost the map during my twenties even though I was trying diligently to understand why I couldn’t make sense of my discontent, but then began to return and then find ‘home’ in my thirties, now fully residing in my ‘home’ in my forties, part of what makes the saying ring true – Home Sweet Home – is knowing and having experienced ‘not being home’ for a duration. Because when we understand what our ‘home’, what makes it welcoming, nourishing and life lifting, there’s nowhere else, or should I say no one else we want to be.
Wishing you an Aha filled journey of discovery as you make your way to your ‘home’, and if you too are now savoring knowing and residing in your ‘home’ wherever your life journey finds and takes you, know that you have accomplished one of the most awesome feats of life. Congratulations and may each day bring you much satisfying and fulfilling contentment.
SIMILAR POSTS/EPISODES YOU MIGHT ENJOY
Examining the Benefits of Self-Awareness, episode #143
The Paradox of True Contentment, episode #339
2 thoughts on “How to Be ‘Home’ within Yourself and the Benefit of Finding It”
That centeredness of “home” is so critical yet I often have to remind myself to return “home” when life seems to be overwhelming. Thank you for the reminder Shannon!
Thank you for stopping by! 🙂 You are exactly right – critical indeed. Your self-awareness is well-tuned as you know when you have strayed and that you need to return and where you are returning to. 🙂 You are not alone and I thank you for expressing your humanness. Wishing you a wonderful week.