Have you read Elizabeth Gilbert’s book with the subtitle ‘One Woman’s Search for Everything’? If yes, find out if the same passage about Liz being in the woods (insider hint: not in the bathroom, but this is about the same) touched you and made you think. If no, find out if this book could make you think or laugh, too. Attraversiamo.
I finished reading the World Bestseller ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ on Tuesday waiting in Heathrow airport for my delayed plane. Liz made me think and laugh as she has such a great humor and the book helped to keep my spirits up instead of getting slightly annoyed. The memoir finishes with an outlook of hope in a quite complicated situation and with her favorite word in Italian ‘attraversiamo’ or ‘let’s cross over’.
Since then I have struggled if I should/could/would do a blog post about it. Arguing with myself in my head about the pros like “it’s fun, I love to write” and the cons like “this is not a priority, no strategic logic to do this, maybe just a way of procrastinating”. You know this kind of internal dialogue I bet!
Life is a journey – and we can ‘have both’
I strongly believe in the statement that ‘you can have both’ or as Elizabeth Gilbert writes, “I wanted to experience both. I wanted worldly enjoyment and divine transcendence – the dual glories of a human life.” (…) So I stopped trying to choose – Italy? India? Or Indonesia? – and eventually just admitted that I wanted to travel to all of them.”(p. 30)
I would phrase this a little bit differently, because I believe that transcendence is a) not divine and b) you’ll be able to enjoy yourself truly and with balance in this world once you understand that this life will end and that everything is constantly changing.
In her book, Elizabeth Gilbert goes on a journey where she first indulges in sense desires (eat – Italy), spends then time in an ashram devoted to her spiritual path (pray – India) and eventually finds a balance between the two, AND her new love in Indonesia.
We’re all on a journey. Life presents us some huge challenges. They may keep us miserable for a while or stuck for a long time. But always, always they allow us to grow!
Are you lost in the woods?
“When you’re lost in those woods [of depression], it sometimes takes you a while to realize that you are lost. For the longest time, you can convince yourself that you’ve just wandered a few feet off the path, that you’ll find your way back to the trailhead any moment now. Then night falls again and again, and you still have no idea where you are, and it’s time to admit, that you have bewildered yourself so far off the path that you don’t even know from which direction the sun rises anymore.” (p. 50)
Why do I quote this passage and was touched by it?
Well, I used to be lost. And it took me quite a while to realise how far off I had gone – and then it was ‘too late’. And then it took me quite some time to get unstuck and get back to a life I am fully in love with.
There are so many people who share this, who got lost, completely lost. And we all felt so small and stupid and alone when we started to admit it to ourselves. ‘Being lost’ can take quite different forms, but it’s all about having lost direction.
How can you get back on track?
You don’t need to go to Rome and eat lots of Pizza, pasta and gelati or scrub the floor of an Indian temple like Liz to get better. There are many other ways like reading ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ or some quotes of it or watching a film that makes your heart sing (‘August Rush’ super soppy, but beautiful) or laugh out loud (‘Bridget Jones’?) to start with.
Do you lead the life you want? Are you on track or are there things you know that you don’t want this to continue?
My mission is to spark true success in this world for the benefit of women like you and all the people around them, too. I can empower you to tap into the knowledge inside you. On this blog you’ll find lots of articles telling you more about how this works and how you can lead a brilliant life.
If you’re ready to find the path to a life where you flourish, where you can ‘have both’, a full life you can enjoy with all your senses and that has meaning and purpose, apply for a complimentary coaching call.
Read part 2 of this article and learn how to get out of your way and how to conquer this little voice in our head …