Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Serendipity of Three

Three Rules of Work:
Out of clutter find simplicity;
From discord find harmony;
In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.
-- Albert Einstein
I really admire Einstein. I know that's an understatement... and that I'm certainly not a maverick in this. I barely understand even the simplest of his theories. We all learned E=mc2 in grammar school (Imagine, the generation before mine didn't even study that!) Energy = mass x the constant speed of life squared. I was a good student and learned those phrases, even if I couldn't wrap my head around them. Well, I'm not alone in that, either. I have a wonderfully thick book on Einstein's life waiting by my bed to be read... where it has been for at least a year. (I promise I'll return it, Roy!) The first photo of the genius in the book is of him riding a bicycle! Einstein... while he spoke with the Universe, never let go of his inner child.
So this morning I received a daily message from CharityFocus which began with his Three Rules of Work. While I've been distracted from writing in my blog, I've also been waiting to have something worth actually writing about. This morning gave me that serendipity of three. Thanks, Albert!
Also, one of the newest crop circles in England is three circles connected and flowing one into the other with a smaller circle in each center. A beautiful graphic, but what's most interesting is that each of the center circles has a different lay of the grain, a different weaving, each as beautiful as the next. I've been fascinated by this intentional difference, wondering what the Energies were symbolizing in this variation of designs. (Or were they just having fun and showing off?) So, in honor of three's, I'm connecting each message to the other.
1. Out of clutter find simplicity
For a few months now, I have been distressed by the clutter in my life. I know that when my physical surroundings are in chaos, my mental state is disorganized. I've also been reminded time and again in various ways about the importance of Feng Shui and how our physical surroundings affect our own energy. I know that this physical clutter represents internal clutter. The greater the external chaos, the greater the internal chaos. So, with Andrew and Allen's help and a pull-myself-up-by-the-bootstrap effort on my part, I have started slowly nibbling away at all the clutter. (How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time...) It is all so overwhelming! I have written before what a packrat I am. But enough is enough! It IS time to lighten up. (Connie, thanks for your "electronic cow-prod" nudge!) My feelings are reflected in this quote from DailyGood: Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task. -- William James. Boy, ain't that the truth!
I have been focusing on creating my jewelry over the past couple of months in order to meet some goals and timelines (shows, requests, etc.). This is an abundance of blessings for sure, but I have ignored other parts of my work in doing so.

One of those neglected areas is my bookbinding. I love binding books and creating journals, but there is no way to create jewelry and books in the same space: they require totally different tools and materials. So I haven't had the fortitude to put away all my jewelry work to indulge in my journals only to bring all the jewelry work back out once I've finished a couple of journals. So we have turned an adjacent room in our home into my book studio (talk about an abundance of blessings!). I'm very thankful for this space so I can indulge in both of my passions! Andrew and Allen have both helped me to start that shift. But, of course, that creates more clutter (it gets worse before it gets better). Further, I've been wanting the room arrangement to be comfortable from a practical and an energetic standpoint, and it has taken some time for the Muse to whisper what that set-up might be. But I know how I need the room arranged now... and now I need to go through all the accumulation to make that happen! (I'm not going to post a photo of THAT challenge!)
Yesterday morning, I woke up early with the Muse whispering "Get up and straighten up!" So I spent some time organizing my jewelry studio so that it would be conducive to finding what I am looking for. Whew! What a difference! I feel so much better now when I'm in here now! Cleared desktops, files in order, leg room, notes where I need them. Ahhhh! Now I feel pride and relief when I walk into my jewelry studio, which encourages free-flowing energy and creativity. Next is my book studio (as soon as I finish this post)!

2. From discord find harmony

One of the mental wrestlings I've been having is about attaining balance in my new business: balancing creating (jewelry and books) with marketing (blog, website -- still to be completed -- writing, etc.) with R&D (yes, even small businesses need to develop new ideas and learn new skills!) with inventory (purchasing materials for my art) with general paperwork (accounting, correspondence, etc.). No wonder I have felt overwhelmed!
So I arranged an hour phone call with life coach Adair Cates , author of Living with Intention which covers 6 areas of life and 10 steps to feeling fulfilled by them. Adair sent me a form to complete prior to our phone call so we'd have somewhere to start our dialog. Being a good student, I completed it... but wasn't really pleased with what I came up with. During that conversation with Adair, she suggested I consider using the term "harmony" instead of "balance". And what a difference that makes!
In some ways, I know balance is a moving target: one needs strong sea legs to maintain balance, shifting with the currents of life. And balancing the numerous roles we women play in life has been a focus of mine for a while now. What a challenge! It's like forgiveness: a one-shot effort doesn't do the trick, it's an on-going process. And on-going, and on-going. And I'm pretty rigid when it comes to how I'm approaching balance. (I know, that sounds like an oxymoron, but there you are.)

And while harmony is a challenge, too, it doesn't seem (to me) to be quite so structured, so demanding as the idea of balance. I like that; it gives me a break, a little wiggle-room. I don't know why there's a difference in my connotation of the words, but there is. It's as though harmony is inside and outside and flowing, while balance (as in scales) is more structured, more leveled. Maybe Justice is blind because she prefers harmony over those equally balanced scales she's holding....

So, now I am seeking to find harmony in what I do in my business. And the most recent way I have found balance was to rearrange my studios. And what harmony I find in my jewelry studio now (and my book studio very soon)! Ahhhhh....

3. In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.

This has been a difficult few months. Husband Andrew being away from home with his work, me becoming unemployed, son Allen leaving home (then returning after being arrested), and daughter Paige leaving home (that chapter is still unfinished).
However, there has been great opportunity for growth and learning in these times.
Andrew is looking for a job that will allow him to be home full-time. It's not easy, but it will come: the perfect work at the perfect time.
I have started my own "crazy quilt" business where I am incorporating the things I am most passionate about into what I offer to others: my artwork, my writing, my teaching, and my facilitation. I have been very blessed by the response to The Cre8tive Flow, and I am very thankful. And I am fulfilled with what I am doing (and learning how to be harmonious with it, too).
Allen had 180 degree turn-around after his return home from his 3-week adventure in March. He is accepting responsibility for his choices, and continues to grow. He has completed high school by earning his GED. He is driving now and looking for full-time work. He is compassionate for others (I could learn from him), respectful, kind, and thoughtful. He is strong physically and mentally. He is looking before he leaps. I'm proud of him and enjoy being around him.
Paige chose to go live elsewhere in May, and is making choices based on the most fun she can have right now. I send her prayers of safety and clarity whenever I think of her. Obviously, this is the path she needs to walk right now in order to learn the lessons she needs to learn, whatever they may be.
The main lesson I've learned over these past several months is to let go of control, and trust Spirit. This is The Big One for me. I certainly don't know or understand all the dynamics at work in my family of souls. I do believe that we are all together in this lifetime to help each other learn the lessons we -- at a soul level -- agreed we needed in order to grow closer to the Divine, and our own Divine Selves. A la Caroline Myss's Sacred Contracts. And the mystery and miracle is that learning my lesson somehow coincides perfectly with my loved ones learning their lessons; the lessons complement each other. Now THAT is mind-boggling. Wonder what Einstein would have to say about that?
Another lesson I've learned is that everything happens in perfect timing. I don't see the big picture, but Spirit does. And while I don't believe in predestination, there is a Divine Plan where Divine Timing works. That's another part of the mystery: we have free will, and it is in miraculous harmony with the Divine.
My mind is starting to feel fireworks and go "boomboomboom" as I start to try to comprehend what I've written, so I'm going to stop here so I can be practical and move into my book studio.
I hope you find simplicity, harmony, and opportunity in your day today.