I notice a lot how we are marketed to through billboards on the roads we travel. What stands out to me these days are not the flashy photos, the big glaring signs as wide as a building, the half naked partying people enjoying alcohol saying if I drink this I will have fun too.

No what seems to be catching my eye of late are the statements posted up manually on the various church noticeboards. Who chooses these statements? Where do they come from? Sometimes they are of course religious - well these are churches putting the message out there. I seem however to be drawn to the more generic messages as if they were my own mind speaking out to me. So in today's post I would like to include a couple that had particular meaning for me based on observations of people I meet and conversations I have had of late.

Bulletin board 1 said "Never give up. It may be just the time the tide turns."

This statement has to be the ultimate in optimism for the pessimist. It also alludes to the power of possibility and the force that can be in our beliefs if we chanage them. I find that this comment is particularly relevant for all of us as we read the doom and gloom stories in the press, hear of or even experience first hand the ripple effects of economic downturn in parts of the busienss world. For some it is close to home when the pressure to keep paying the mortgage is too much as one more interest rate takes its toll or our share portfolio drops in value by 25% in one day because we chose what we thought were safe investments. There are many other intense experiences in life that can multiply the sense of wanting to give up.

Let go and let others help

I say instead let go. The experience of letting go is very different from giving up. We can still keep the belief and also focus on what we can control, influence and change in our world rather than what we can't. Ultimately in letting go we also need to say to ourself it is ok to ask for help and that we do not have to do everything on our own.

Bulletin board 2 said "A friend is a gift you give your self."

This statement seemed to be related to the other - different locations, different churches. It made me think how we can choose to be alone or with people. And for people like myself who have the tendency to be on the introverted preference side of the equation this can be a risk. We also talk about me time to recharge the batteries. Yes this is good - and necessary - in balance.

Being afraid to be alone

I listened to a story today on a radio show of Carolyn Myss, one of my favourite authors on all things spiritual, energetic, archetypal. In this show she listened to the story of a woman talk about her fear of going outside and obsessive compulsion. Then the diagnosis...this women actually needed more than anything to be with people, not be alone. For her biggest fear was to be alone.

Connect instead

So I bring these three comments together to make an observation. In this world we live in we can become consumed by work, life, chores, tasks, whatever. In the end we can be really alone when in fact we are surrounded by people. When we reach out in whatever way possible we find that there is support, connection and the gift to ourself of believing life is worth living rather than not. In the current times with the pressure we are feeling economically and the stories in the news it can be overbearing. It is more than ever important that we stay connected, don't give up on being with people so that we can continue to give ourselves the gift of friendship which ultimately is life. So I encourage you to turn the tides in your life or that of a person you know by giving and receiving the gift of friendship. Then be thankful and gracious for this gift and it will keep coming.

Let's go there...


ReflectionsJenn Shallvey