My “umbrella” has always been work. When I was in the corporate world I worked hard. I traveled a lot. I had responsibilities. I shouldered them well. As I look back on those 40 years I realize that I was often running away from the lessons, the real part of life I needed to learn.
Oh, sure, I needed to earn a living, keep the family secure, move ahead, up the corporate ladder – that’s what we do, right? But at what expense? How many of us escape into our work with these very rational motivations and miss why we are here in the first place, miss our real purpose?
I am retired now, still working hard, enjoying the work a great deal more and, yes, sometimes I still continue to use work as my umbrella. Why? Rosemary hits on one of the reasons:
All you have is NOW. The lessons don’t go away. The Universe wants you to have that success, satisfaction and fulfillment and puts lessons on your path so that you can clear the blocks and achieve your dreams. Why delay that?
It’s usually fear. But the rewards of doing the work, of learning the lessons, are so much greater than the pain of getting there that it’s worth it to start now.
Yes, it’s usually fear. I wrote about this in a post just last Friday, the 13th when I commented on the blocks we face:
I think the main one is fear – fear of letting go completely and relaxing into full awareness.
I believe my main purpose in this life is to become fully aware, to become enlightened. This is not an ego thing; I believe this is the main purpose of every human on the planet. I, at least on some unconscious level, have known this for a long time. And I have escaped from this, from the lessons that would bring me closer to enlightenment, and worked on all the other things humans do: job, family, earning corporate merits, duty, …
But the Universe wants me to have that “success, satisfaction and fulfillment…” The Universe wants us to become enlightened! The lessons are all there, strewn in our path to bring us into the light.
The ego doesn’t get this. The ego would rather escape into work and feed itself with the rewards of a job well done. So the Universe continues to offer the lessons. And I am beginning to listen. Sometimes the lessons are loud; we can only miss them if we continue to distract ourselves with our umbrellas. Sometimes the lessons are whispers. I’m learning to listen more closely.
I’m following the advice I wrote for myself in the June 13 post (link). And I am ready to “happily dance in the rain!”