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Dare To Play It Big, Issue #070 -- Feeling Like Expanding?
October 17, 2013

Feeling Like Expanding?

In this issue...

  • What I've been up to: Perspective, Simplify, Expand

  • The monthly thought: Feeling Like Expanding?

  • The positive recommendation: Pay It Forward Supporting Munawara

  • The thanking corner: perfect boots in perfect timing and cheese

    What I've been up to: Perspective, Simplify, Expand

    Hello and welcome!

    At the time of writing I'm in Seville, Spain, enjoying a week of holidays (though at the time you'll be reading these lines I'll already be back in the UK). See a pic of a beautiful sunset I caught from the top floor at my parent's house, a week or so ago :)

    I always find it interesting to go away from your usual place for a little while, even as little as a couple of days. It helps to bring perspective to one's own life.

    In my case, the perspective that I am gaining with this little vacation is that I wish to keep simplifying my life and expanding it at the same time - simplifying it from what doesn't serve me any more, clutter and all, and expanding it by doing new things. More in the thought of the month ;)

    Throughout it all, however, life keeps happening Now. So regardless the past, regardless our hopes for the future, I find it essential to develop a space within oneself where one finds peace and love in the now, whatever is going on outside.

    I know that's what you want to. So I wish you a fabulous month where you keep enjoying the trip of being alive, Now ;)

    The Monthly Thought: Feeling Like Expanding?

    I quite like Taoism in that, for me, it gives a very centered stance from which to experience one's own life.

    One of the bits that Taoism talks about is the alternation of yin and yang currents. Sometimes the phase of your life has a yin quality - this is, a contraction, a waiting, a retreat. Sometimes, it has a yang quality - an expansion, a doing, a movement forward.

    The wisest thing to do, apparently, is to identify which current is the predominant one at the time, and play along with it, accepting it as it appears and letting go of it as it fades away and is replaced by the opposite current.

    As it goes, I have been observing a yang current in my life lately - a phase of expansion. Actually, and from an overall point of view, 2013 is being a year of expansion for many people I know.

    Maybe you've also found yourself constricted by limits which used to be just fine, and you're feeling that you somehow need to expand. So what could expansion mean for you, at this time of your life, in a practical way? It could take many shapes, such as...

    • Re-arranging that cluttered spare room, finally getting to throw away or give away all those things that you know you will never use again; thus creating a much more spacious, comfortable and homey spot in your house where you can simply sit and meditate, read a book, enjoy a cup of tea, play with your cat, or observe the rain.

    • Taking that painting / drawing / music / dancing class that you've been telling yourself that you will take 'some day'. Make 'some day' today or any day of this week as suitable, and give yourself the opportunity to expand in new skills, meeting new people, doing something different, and learning something new.

    • Moving! Moving out, moving to another city, moving to another country, or even to another continent... or maybe just moving to another room. A change of space also makes for a change of mental structures and for more adaptability.

    • Exploring that new area of knowledge that you've been interested in lately, but that you haven't given yourself a chance to look into because it would look too odd for your friends / family / spouse... Ditch the external image, get yourself to a bookshop or a library (or even the internet), and enjoy finding out more about whatever you're called to explore.

    • Sorting out your clothes. That t-shirt that you've kept for 15 years because you love it but have not used in all that time, those trousers that were oh-so-comfortable once and that today look more like you found them on the side of the street... let them go. Let the old go, and allow for the space to be filled in due time.

    Are you there? Are you expanding? How would you expand? How would you surprise yourself and make your life even more interesting - you know, a life that you love waking up to every day?

    One more thing before I go... I've been coupling the idea of expansion with that of 'life is now'. Observing the phenomenon of death and sickness, and the impermanence of life, has brought me closer to that of 'if not now, when?'

    So... What are *you* waiting for? ;)

    The Positive Recommendation: Pay It Forward Supporting Munawara

    This month I'm recommending a very worthwhile cause that will allow you to pay it forward...

    Munawara is a beautiful woman who first came in contact with me a few years ago through my website. We kept messaging and at some point we even met in London. We have kept in contact since - I am very grateful that my website got us in touch, for she is a kind, positive soul.

    Munawara is now doing a walk (on fire!) to raise money for the Keech Hospice Care in the UK. When she contacted me letting me know, I thought "This is something really nice, a good cause that does deserve raising as much money as possible".

    So I offered to include a mention of it in this issues of the newsletter, and I asked Munawara to write something by way of explanation. She says...

      "My mother is that one person for whom I can walk on fire and this is exactly what I am going to do.

      She died few years ago after a long and courageous fight with breast cancer, dementia and a challenging domestic life.

      I know how it is to care for a loved one when you are aware of the fact that they are dying and they will die no mater what you do.

      Keech Hospice Care is making lives of terminally ill people and their families easier by providing them care and support, free of cost.

      I identify with them all.

      So, in the loving memory of my mother, I am walking on fire, to raise money for Keech Hospice Care because they are doing, what I believe in, supporting people facing the greatest challenge in their life - that is, facing death, either of their own or, even worse, of a Loved One."

    Please do take a few minutes of your time to make a donation through Munawara's page on JustGiving: Munawara's walk on fire (you can donate through PayPal or using a bank card).

    Pay it forward, and help to make the lives of people who have it very tough a bit better. Now that's an effective way of extending your positive energy to others!

    From me and Munawara, thank you so much! :)

    The Thanking Corner

    I believe that being grateful for something is one of the most powerful tools to feel better immediately. Here are the two thanking bits of the month:

    Thankful for... perfect boots in perfect timing. At the beginning of the year I started to notice that I wanted a pair of flat black boots. I only had a pair of flat boots, and they are brown. They are wonderful (they are my favourite boots) but, as it goes, they don't always match with some of my dresses. The solution was easy: a pair of tall, flat, plain, comfortable black boots which I could wear with many different outfits.

    Finding them, however, didn't prove such an easy task - I spent most of this year looking for them, but all the boots I came across had way too many ornaments, or did not fit me nicely, or they had some thing or other which made them just not the ones. Until about a week ago, when I was on holidays in Spain and went to a large department store - and there they were, *exactly* the boots I wanted, no more no less - and to top it up, from one of my favourite brands, and top comfortable. Perfect boots, in perfect timing for the Autumn/Winter :)

    Thankful for... cheese. What a nice invention, cheese. I love almost all types of cheese - blue, from sheep, from goat, smoked, brie, mature, halloumi, parmesan... Cut up a few slices or cubes from different types of cheese, serve them on a plate with different types of bread, grapes and honey or pickle - and you have me :) What a tasty treat!

    What are you thankful for? Share your gratitude on this page and read what others are thankful for!

    Thank you for reading this issue of Dare To Play It Big, the free positive thinking newsletter of The Benefits Of Positive Thinking.

    Care to send me your thoughts about this issue's topics? Email me and let me know!

    If you enjoyed this newsletter, please pass it along to your friends, family and colleagues, or send them to the Dare To Play It Big sign up page. I thank you in advance.

    Stay well,


    "Someone's sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago."

    -Warren Buffett

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