I just realized that I’m spoiled
“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.” – Marianne Williamson
This past spring, I was in India for a spiritual adventure. Since being back, I am guilty of falling back into the pace and lifestyle of living in Toronto. Everyone here seems to say that they are too busy, they don’t have enough time, or that life is hectic. It is seems as if most big cities like Toronto have this ailment.
Becoming more in tune with myself through my spiritual explorations lately, I find it incredible how much our environments can affect us. I try to make a conscious effort to stay balanced, live congruently with my core Self, and not let my surroundings and the societal norms dictate who I become; but sometimes it’s tough.
Sometimes, I too get caught up in my head with all the things I think I need to get done to be happy, the comparisons to others my ego likes to create, and listening to other people’s opinions and allowing it to affect my attitude.
However, the more I’ve practiced meditation and mindfulness since returning from India, I’ve become better at recognizing my mind and ego taking me away from my Self, and the richness of each moment of my life.
I realize that I’m incredibly lucky in my life, have far more than I need, and that everything is perfect the way it is happening.
Part of why I feel this way is that I was born in India.
Every time I go back for a visit, I realize that there is no justification for me to complain, criticize or condemn about anything in my life.
I have had far more opportunity, comfort, and security in my life than many people in this world. I have received an abundance of luxuries, gifts, and knowledge. I am loved, I am cared for, and I am healthy. I live in a country with free health care, have a family that supports me through thick and thin, and have a lot to be proud of.
I could be any one of the hundreds of millions of children born in India, and yet, somehow I lucked out with my life. I don’t think one life or lifestyle is better than another, as some of the happiest people I’ve ever met are in India living subsistence lifestyles. But I do feel that my chance and opportunity to have the life I have is truly a blessing.
When I was in India this past trip, I met someone who told me that I was a prince in my past life. I’m not sure about whether there is reincarnation, but what I do know is that I feel like a prince every day of my life. Certainly in India, all my relatives treat me like royalty; they bring out their finest plates, try to show me the best of what they have to offer, and feed me copious amounts of sweets and specialty dishes.
Regardless of your background, upbringing, or life’s journey, I truly believe that all of us have so much we can be grateful for. By directing our mind with positive questions, we can get out of our mind’s viscous cycle of worrying about the past or future and listening to its endless ego-based chatter.
To be grateful, stay present, and remain grounded, here are the five questions that I use to start my day:
- What am I, or could I be, happy about ?
- What am I, or could I be, proud about?
- What am I, or could I be, excited about?
- What am I, or could I be, grateful for?
- Who loves me, and who do I love?
I answer these questions every morning as I’m getting ready for my day. I use my answers to feel happy, proud, excited, grateful, and loved. I let these emotions sink in for a few moments, and I start my day off feeling like a prince.
I hope you too enjoy these questions, and I look forward to hearing how they work for you. Feel free to share the strategies you use as well to be grounded at the start of a day.
With deepest respect,