L’eggo my EGO!

BigHeadEgo

Hey you! With the big head!  L’eggo my ego already, will ya?

In the U.S., it’s Thanksgiving soon. You will read a lot about gratitude, but today, let’s talk about ego. It’s that voice in your head that says:

“I’m right. You’re wrong.”

“What about me?”

“That’s not fair!”

I’ve had the most excellent honor of glimpsing the other side of grief and it comes with a lot of clarity. Clarity about who I want in my life and how. Sometimes when we decide who can be allowed in our inner circle, or be a member of our personal board of directors, our ego and its fantastic soap operaesque conversations come into play in our mind or live with other people. The inimitable Jonathan Fields of The Good Life Project got me thinking about this when he wrote, “What, you don’t need me?” post yesterday.

Step back for a moment, as you glide into yet another [possibly emotion-stirring-giant-food-coma-inducing] family meal this Thanksgiving, ask yourself what you want it to look like.

Maybe you don’t want Uncle Marty to be drunk.

Maybe you don’t want to hear your mother criticize your clothing, your spouse, your sexual orientation.

What if, you let Uncle Marty and your mom, do them.

What if you just did you.  Create a force field of love around you. What if those comments bounce back and when the most excellent rerun of the soap opera starts again in your head, you shut it off and tune in on your Lotus Flower Heart Channel. Or your I’m a Rock Star in this show. I’ve been incessantly listening to Stevie Wonder over the last week and have found that man to emanate so much love in his songs that even my neighbor at the office said that she likes hearing me sing. And it’s not because I have a great singing voice.  It’s because I am happy.  I am trying my best to let that big head full of thoughts float out through my ears and be replaced by Stevie singing, “Don’t You Worry ‘Bout a Thing.”

Who is on your personal board of directors?

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I know God won’t give me anything I can’t handle, I just wish he didn’t trust me so much.

–Mother Teresa

Maaaaaan, I know some people who are getting it in the gut right now.  Loved ones in the hospital.  Physical pain. Grief.  What can you do when you are stuck in the muck of stuff you can’t control?  Three words:

Ask. For. Help.

I remember several years ago arriving at National Airport, at one of my lowest, most exhausted points, and just crying as I waited for my luggage. I was under so much stress at the time. A friend picked me up and handed me this little plaque with the Mother Teresa quote above.  Ever since then, it sits on my desk every single day.

No matter if you believe in a higher power or not, you need your people. You need your personal board of directors. This same friend that met me at the airport, periodically, calls me “Madam Chairman” and asks for advice or simply calls to share the fact that all is well. We also have that “bruja” magical connection where one of us is thinking of the other, and the other knows.

Do you have a personal board of directors?

Knowing what to do comes from knowing who you are.  Sometimes, we need our circles, our tribes, to reflect the best parts of ourselves, to hold up hope when we have none, and to carry concern over worry. The latter is a nuance I recently relished from the empress of inspiration, Danielle LaPorte.

Do you have people whom you can call to share “here’s what” and they do not need fifteen minutes of context because they know your life? 

Even if you don’t talk all of the time, there’s a heart connection.

My board has never met all together. I receive and give one-on-one consults and referrals.  We rarely have long conversations unless we have planned time together.  Many of them do not live where I live.

Somehow, we stay connected. Through phone, text, Skype, handwritten letter (try one quickly before they become obsolete) and when circumstance strike, they are live and in person, over coffee, tea, wine, water, tears or luggage.

Love your people. Find your people. Ask for help.

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