Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Summer of Eat Pray Love

The other night I watched Julia Roberts star in “Eat Pray Love” again. This true story continues to inspire and move me in so many ways.  

Just how Liz Gilbert, a successful woman in her 30s with an affluent lifestyle, in an okay but not so perfect marriage with a husband who loved her, a nice job as a writer and settled routine in New York, found the courage to admit that all was not well and walk away from it all, is beyond me!  By refusing to go with the flow in a life she no longer wanted to live, Liz became open to the infinite possibilities and embarked on an inner journey to find herself.  In this beautiful film Roberts’ character travels to Italy, India and Bali to literally transform her life by eating, praying and learning to love herself again. By surrendering old tired ways of living and being, Liz draws us in to witness that you can be anywhere in this world but if you are not at home within yourself you will never find inner peace or true love.

The film made me reflect on my own life over the years and how in the past I have settled to conform but deep down knew that all was not well. This summer holiday has been a welcome break from my usual busy school routine. I have missed the children at school but have valued the much needed ME TIME. My original plan for the summer was to work in a holiday camp with children, but it didn’t feel right so I turned it down and am glad I did.  As much as I enjoy working with kids I needed a well deserved break.  Instead, to my surprise, I have been unknowingly following my own self discovery through “Eat Pray Love” this summer.  Seeing the film the other night connected the dots for me.

EAT” – Over the past few weeks I have been feeding my soul through journalling, doing yoga, going to the theatre to see the ballet and watching film screenings, making trips to the seaside to breathe in some fresh sea breeze, decorating my flat, absorbing myself into the Olympics and starting my own part time therapy business, Harvey Heals.  Phew!  All of these continue to make me happy and bring my spirit alive. Granted, they may not be the physical act of eating, but they fill the same warm feeling gap as any good food would, by feeding my soul in more ways than one.

PRAY” – The praying part of summer has been by doing the first verse of the Serenity Prayer every day since the end of July. I am not religious, but believe there’s more to life than what’s here right now, and trust that by developing a sense of faith, life flows a lot more smoother for me. I have also given myself time to quieten my mind, switch off and tune in by meditating daily.  The power of meditation has helped me listen to my inner voice and just be – letting go of all the noise and clutter from everyday life and finding that inner calm and stillness within.   When school term starts next week, I’ll be dedicating time each day to simply meditate.

LOVE” – The love part has come about by reflecting on how far I have come by loving myself enough to admit I may not be perfect, but value myself enough to continue to make changes in my life.  As Paulo Coelho once said ”we need to forget what we think we are, so we can become what we really are.” The more I love what & who I am, and how I have shed the need to prove myself to people, the more I find I am open to receiving love authentically from my closest loved ones, which is more important to me than anything. 

Wow, what a summer!  I hope this inspires you to think about your own “Eat Pray Love” scenario.  So what are YOU doing to feed your soul, develop a sense of faith and purpose in your life and love and appreciate the person you really are?

Happy shimmies :)