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Friday, July 20, 2012

To settle or to travel

To this exact date, it’s 5 months since I left India. I came back to Ireland to edit, publish and promote my first book, to write a second and to move on again. In my mind I’d hoped to have all this ‘done’ by June. Well, well well… such unrealistic expectations I had from myself and I feel like a proper nitwit if I’m to admit that I actually thought I could do all of that AND do some proper (and MUCH needed) refuelling of the body and reconnecting with the family at the same time. Holy smoke, how much do I think I’m capable of doing! Anyhow, I realized pretty quickly that it wasn’t gonna happen! And I was totally fine with that. I was taking more time to get the first book the way I wanted and I was putting more and more focus on yoga and meditation (I’d also been sick on and off, for a few weeks in between as well). Practising the ‘art of patience’ and learning of the processes involved in publishing has really opened my eyes! Wouw… (the world behind just one simple book, is so VAST!)

The longer I’m here, the more I’m connecting with Ireland too, I’m more open to LIFE here and have met some great like-minded people. Meeting others has brought some valuable experiences and I’ve worked through huge emotional issues that were been holding me back. This has given me so much strength on all levels—especially the physical level, which was much needed. (I’m only realizing now just how weak my body had become, while I was travelling, and how dangerously low my weight had dropped. But I’ve been learning and healing whatever it was that threw me into turmoil (mainly whilst I was in China). Being in Ireland has also made me accept my heritage and my roots so much more and I feel at ease with the fact that I’m not travelling around the planet at the moment. It’s probably the first time in my life I can say this! So the relief I find in this new feeling, I can’t describe—well I probably could, but it will take too long J

Anyhow, this strong connection with Ireland and the feeling of GROUNDING this country gives me, COULD be the start of me wanting to settle down. Hummmm… I’ve been questioning this for quite some weeks now because  usually within 6 months of being back in Ireland, I’d have dates set and flights booked. But I haven’t. So of course there are moments when the thoughts of ‘turning my back on travels’ have led to little panic attacks and onwards to major breakdowns. Especially when people would ask me if I’m gonna settle… or if I’m gonna leave. Whenever I hear the question: ‘are you going to settle?’ it's like there’s a switch being flicked and instantly something tells me: ‘Niamh GET GOING!’ It’s the travel-bug inside of me that needs to be satisfied. In the  past this has been one of my biggest fears in LIFE: answering ‘yes’. At time I can still be terrified that if I say ‘yes’ then I’m denying myself of travel and if I say ‘no’ then I’m putting expectations and pressure on myself to make travelling to other side of the world my next step (whether or not it’s something I deeply need and want to do right now). So, what does Niamh do, seeing as though either a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’ are filling her with fear? She says… ‘Hummmm…. Who knows, I have to wait and see what happens with the book’. As it stands, it's one big question mark, but even if I did know what was going to happen, I’d still never answer a plain ‘yes’ or ‘no’. Because doing that feels so limiting.

I know it’s limiting because of what the word ‘settle’ means to most people: creating a sense of security based on the stuff around us—a home, a car, a job, a partner. Creating a predictable life due to being scared of change and therefore also clinging to everything (and everyone) around us in order to feel safe in this world. 'Apparently' only in this sense of security, a person can happily depend on those ‘things’ and those ‘stable’ relationships, for life to be okay. Hummm… Is that what 'settled' means? Is this what I’m ‘supposed’ to be doing, if I’m not travelling? Am I meant to create all these ‘things’ around me, just to feel happy, accepted and a part of the ‘real’ world? 

Well, I can safely say I’m never going to create a life where my happiness is dependent on all of these ‘securities’. I’ll never create a settled life, if ‘settled living’ represents such dependent, predictable and static ways. I’ll never live life just for the sake of what others wish/want/expect me to be. 

So, this is my interpretation of being settled: I depend on NOTHING around me to give a sense of safety and I choose to feel safe, secure and settled in myself--regardless of what I have or don't have, regardless of who I'm surrounded by or not surrounded by, regardless of what place I'm in or wish to be in. I’m learning to live my own settled life, in my own way. I have my focus, I have my job… (whether or not it's classed as such by others). I have my health, I’m committed to growth and committed to moving forward, in whatever direction that may be. I have connections with amazing people, I have visions of what I need to be doing and as long as I keep them clear—by living in my own settled manner—then it’s all going to come to me. I know that if I continue to feel settled in myself, I’ll always be doing what I want and need to do. Then I have my own home, wherever I may roam. So I can happy anywhere… no longer searching the world for the perfect place, because I’ve found it in my own little space.
I can honestly say that I’m not scared anymore if I stay temporarily, I’m not scared if I suddenly have to go. I'm not hiding from the world, I'm not running away from this world. I'm in this world as me, without listening to the expectations people have around me. I don't care if I'm expected to settle or travel. The only thing I care about is living up to the expectation I have from myself… which is: being real and guided by spirit… instead of being guided by fears and limitations. My spirit wants to learn, grow, create, write and connect with like-minded people. And it's happening. 

Okay, I'll step back for now... without meaning to go too deep, it happened... haha...
I guess I'm just clearing up how important it is to be making choices in life that are based on INNER reality. And I can only know my own reality by letting-go of the expectations I've placed on myself (to get moving) and by letting-go of the pressure I've also placed on myself (to work wonders... asap!)... 

Wouw, these past 5 months have truly been invaluable in terms of realizing the importance there is in trusting the irrelevance of time when it comes to working and living a life that's based on personal truth, values and expression. 

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