Marie, a subscriber, writes, "Does 'lit-up' mean being manically supercharged? If so, forget it. I'm not a Christmas tree."
Thank you, Marie, and thank all the heavens that we're at an age where we can say what we mean!
Being lit up isn't reciting affirmations ad nauseum or pumping yourself with positivity. Lights-on experiences are more candlelight glow than Las Vegas neon. For yours truly, lying in bed with cats and husband, listening to David read aloud...Bare hands in rich, loamy dirt, creating beauty in my garden, blissfully alone with robins, roses, and the wind...Swoon-worthy food and wine, and delicious conviviality with our monthly dinner group...
Here's the kicker: what lights you up lights up the world. One of my favorite quotes is from Buddhist scholar Howard Thurman: "Don't ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."
As a voluptuous, deeply spiritual woman, here's how I render it: The world urgently needs us magnificent, lit-up boomer women. From the epicenter of our pleasure we can rock creation.
Ever been "helped" by a grim do-gooder? Ever been helped by someone lit up from within? Getting served by someone luminous in body and soul, even a parking garage attendant, makes this woman light up too, and happy to pass it along! No telling how far the ripples of our own radiance spread out into the world. That's the joy and the magic of lighting up. Isn't it a wonder that just being our own deeply pleasured selves can help the world in ways we will never know?
Clients have asked, "if I'm THAT pleasured, why would I care about anyone, or want to change anything?" "Because," I respond,” when you are lit up, you are in love. And what love does is overflow.” What craziness is it to believe we must be outraged or heartbroken to make a difference? Do we really think that the happier we are, the unkinder and lazier we become? Let’s get this straight: the more lit up we are, the more our own kindness and caring flourish.
Lights-on living is truly win-win, gals. We get to feel great, and we then get to offer ourselves to the world from that bounty. I ask you, how good can it get?
So what is it that lights you up? Not what lights up your lover, best friend, mother, self-help guru du jour, or even the Dalai Lama. Doing what anyone else says should light you up is like swan diving right back into that slimy cesspool of a second-hand life.
No, sister--what lights you up? What makes your skin tingle and heart soar? What, in the doing of it, opens you wide to the sweet grace of the present moment?
Make a list of what lights you up. You'll have a customized menu to order from whenever you’re hungry for a dollop of delicious delight. Get open-mindedly curious about what deeply pleasures you. No censoring: nothing is too small, too brief, too naughty, too nice. My lights-on list ranges from painting my toenails (iridescent crimson just sends me) to meditating to delights that David would blush for me to describe. This past Saturday I spent the morning in bed, reading Eat, Pray, Love...ahhhh...and from that luscious, filled-up space had a wonderful time in the afternoon helping friends box up belongings for a major move.
Here's a question for you to luxuriate in: How would your life be enriched if you did something every day that made you ahhhh from deep in your belly and soul? How might topping off with pleasure enhance work, family life, friendships, volunteering?
Try it out and see: We're cheering you on, sister. The world needs you.