August 31, 2015
Soren Kierkegaard said “Every human being comes to earth with sealed orders.” Sealed orders are not to be read until a specific time, and often we don’t know what that time is until it presents itself.
As individuations of this grand evolution called Humanity, each of us is opening our orders every day in our relationships, our work, our home environments. We’re opening them alone or with each other as we face the unexpected or expected with our families, communities and culture. Some of us are eager to know what our orders are; others of us would rather not know or not know just yet. Some of us choose to ignore them altogether. In any case, knowing ourselves well can prepare us for the consequences or benefits of our choices.
Knowing ahead of time what we can expect from ourselves in kindness, patience, understanding and forgiveness helps us face our orders with a degree of confidence and courage. Knowing ahead of time how our anger or judgment or dismissiveness can get triggered helps us see where our work is – before our orders force us to face these limitations.
Practicing self-awareness, self-reflection and self-examination in the quiet moments of our lives begins with a willingness to be truthful with ourselves, allowing candor, vulnerability and directness. Practicing helps us admit and accept our dark side and our shortcomings, bringing these to light, inviting our work, giving us opportunities to grow.
Practice begins with taking that first step with intention, commitment and self-compassion. And we can begin whenever we’re ready.