Sustenance that Sustains Self: The Care and Feeding of Self
Common sense says that each of us is or has a self. But having a self isn’t about possessing something that is static. It is about intentionally and lucidly participating in the emergence of something that is dynamic. The human act of “selfing” is our most precious renewable resource. Yet, how does one go about the care and feeding of self? What is the food of self? Here are ten self-renewable acts of “selfing” that indulged in regularly can help to nourish and sustain self:
Choosing – we all want to be the agents of choice in our lives. Having the freedom to choose liberates one’s living. Be it big or small, make at least one choice everyday and you’ll see self becoming.
Reflecting – we all need the time to reflect, to ponder, to consider. Human beings come to know and grow by reflecting. It widens the lens of living. Take a moment for reflection and you’ll see yourself looking back at self.
Othering – we all yearn to be up-close and personal with someone. Integral friendship is the art of making the other self and the self other. By opening to another we are surrendering self to change and transformation. Trust yourself with another to create self.
Loving – we all have experienced the joy of giving and receiving love. Love is to relationships what air is to the body. Love is life sustaining. Live love and you’ll also sustain self.
Giving – we all have reaped the benefits of someone’s gracious giving. Giving is the source of gratefulness and gratefulness makes life worth living. Give to get self.
Forgiving – we all have suffered the pains and pangs of being offended and harmed. To suffer means to carry one’s pain. Forgiveness allows us to let go of our pain. Let go of your pain to liberate self.
Belonging – we all strive to belong to someone, some group or some place. Just knowing that you are part of another person, group or place makes life meaningful. In a sense belonging blossoms being. Find your clan, your tribe, your family and you’ll find the meaning of self.
Storying – we all like to listen to and tell stories. Stories are humanity’s archives and archetypes of selves past, present and future. Each day share at least one story and you will be giving and receiving a testimony and testament to our lineage of self.
Working – we all work in some way or another, be it at a job, a hobby, a dream, or a relationship. Work is the way that we practice our passion and pursue our purpose. Find something to work at and you’ll find self.
Changing – sooner or later we all learn that one of the lessons of living is impermanence. Nothing stays the same, everything changes, even self. Trust in change to be self.
The sooner one gives up the notion of having a self, the sooner one becomes self. Nourish and sustain self by acting with intention to become self. This dynamic process of lucid living is powerfully and perennially self-sustaining.