Synchronicity

This has been a very poor year for my business.    When I was employed by a large corporation and the company went through lean times, my check would show up every other Friday, as long as I could survive the layoffs.    I took this for granted.    I don’t any more.   During our first few years of business, there were short stretches between contracts – and late payments – that made us shuffle our savings account until the cash flow resumed.    But it always did.    The last year has been different.    In spite of our efforts to find new business, we’ve had only one new contract.     We’re very fortunate to be able to live on savings for now but it’s  money we expected to use after retirement.   There’s nothing remarkable about that these days.

Like many people I know, I find myself frustrated that whatever I try doesn’t seem to bear fruit and I wonder if it ever will.   Is it time to do something else?  At 64?   What?   A friend of mine took a depression test.   You answer some questions, compute the score and compare it to a scale.    He came out mildly depressed.    I decided not to take it because it might depress me further.    I know, depression is no joke, but at the mildly depressed levels the best treatments are cognitive anyway and I do a lot of that routinely.    This morning I was particularly down when I drove to the park to do my Morning Pages.    These days they are a muddled blend of whining, self-assessment, self-encouragement, conversations with myself and God (sometimes confusing the two), self-help slogans, self-recriminations, and endless to-do lists.     Today, there was a lot of weariness.   By the time I was done with 2 1/2 pages, I’d decided I was being too hard on myself, that lots of people are struggling right now.    I resolved to appreciate myself more, not for just my business efforts but for the other things I do.   I even (gasp) vowed to try to love myself.    How new age, my Inner Skeptic said.     I opened one of the morning readers I’m using these days, Melody Beattie’s Journey to the Heart to May 8 … laughed out loud.  The title of the day’s page was Love Yourself.   I then opened David Kundtz’s Quiet Mind randomly to a page.    The topic was Weariness and offered suggestions for calming yourself before facing what he called the Mountain of Too Much.

This is a perfect example of synchronicity, a term I first found in Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, but which was coined by Carl Jung to describe ” simultaneous occurences that are meaningfully related—the cause and the effect occur together.”   Skeptics (my Inner Skeptic included) HATE the notion of synchronicity.   It’s certainly not logical or rational or scientific.   Mr.  Spock would definitely not approve.    But I get a choice of whether to listen to my Inner Skeptic and this is an area where ignoring his howls  contributes to my own emotional well-being.   When I’m open to synchronicity, it’s the minor key to the saying, when the student is ready, the teacher appears, bringing reminders rather than teachers.     It can be a phrase overheard in the supermarket …  looking up at the night sky just in time to see an owl traverse the full moon … or  song coming on the radio just when I needed to hear it.    It reminds me of some helpful principle I learned then forgot.    It says, What you’re doing is OK.    It says, I’m here.    It says, Look at the beauty in your life.      I can choose to chant stupid coincidence along with my Inner Skeptic or I can be inspired.   Inspired feels better.

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