In your mind, what is the relationship between freedom and commitment? For many people, those ideas exist on opposite ends of the spectrum of life. But what if I told you that true freedom is only possible through commitment? It make sound crazy, but so many freedoms have opened up in my life, and it's all thanks to a committed practice that has benefited me in countless ways.
It sounds simple on the surface: my husband David and I have a regular practice of connecting with our inner voice, of listening to our true selves and following the wisdom within. We like to refer to this as our practice of "self-inquiry," and it's one of the things in our lives that we're absolutely and wholeheartedly dedicated to. But it's so much more complex than it sounds. Through this seemingly simple practice, we are able to open up possibilities that in the past we wouldn't have even been aware of. This is where the freedom comes in - when you make the commitment to connect with who you really are, all that is possible suddenly becomes available to you.
David and I had planned a trip. Travel is such a big deal, especially if you're flying, and there's a lot of effort that goes into the preparation. Packing, housesitters, making sure everything continues to run smoothly while you're gone - it all takes a huge amount of coordination. When you set the wheel in motion, it gets up such a momentum that if it all came to a screeching halt, you'd expect the worst to happen.
So there we were, riding along to the airport, all our plans rushing ahead at full speed. There was nothing that was going to stop us… and then I checked my phone, only because I'd had a strong feeling that I needed to. Because of my self-inquiry practice, I've learned to trust that feeling implicitly, and as usual it was right - there had been several calls. People were trying to reach me urgently, which only confirmed for me that intuition never lies.
Next thing we knew we were heading back to the house, but the strangest feeling had settled over me: excitement. Where I had expected to feel disappointment, annoyance, resentment, or even anger at this sudden change of plans, I felt like the wheel was still turning with its full force, only now it had veered off its original path and was taking us somewhere new and unexpected. I liked the thought of that, actually, and I started thinking about all the wonderful things that might happen to us now that our original plans had been taken out of the picture.
When we got home, we spend a few quiet moments in meditation. Then my intuition kicked in again, and its message was clear: pick a direction. I announced these instructions out loud, and without missing a beat, my husband suddenly chimed in and said, "I think north sounds right."
So north we went. We ended up at the most charming little boutique hotel you can imagine, and our stay there was made possible only by the fact that they'd had a last-minute cancelation - just our luck. And that "luck" continued throughout the weekend, with event after event falling perfectly into place.
This is what can be possible when one makes the commitment to letting the inner voice speak. All I have to do is stay on my true path of commitment to my daily practice, and the resulting freedoms simply present themselves. I can let go of control issues and worry and anxiety, and stop limiting myself with things like blame and resentment. These are the gifts of freedom that come with commitment. What a fantastic way to roll!
by Maryanne Comaroto of Maryanne Live