Diligently Crossing Paths

Another week of this year of “+2” has come and gone, as we prepare to “Spring Ahead”. 

Undertaking our annual realignment of time, we are readjusting and regulating ourselves for the journey ahead.

So let’s review some steps offered over the past week, on how to make our crossing paths, our shared path much more “Becoming”. When? “Today”.

Our discussions these past six days began by determining if we are “Dedicated to Diligence”.

Motivated by an expression we don’t hear too much, anymore.

At least not unless I’m talking to myself.

With due diligence….”

See.

When was the last time you heard it?

I know.

That’s why we’ll begin by drafting a common understanding of what it means.

Then discuss why it’s important plus how we can get better at it .

So let’s examine what the Cambridge English Dictionary has to offer with its definition of “due diligence”:

“action that is considered reasonable for people to be expected to take in order to keep themselves or others and their property safe.”

In another of their derivatives, they note:

“exercise/demonstrate due diligence People have to exercise due diligence and watch what’s being bought on their credit cards.”

In addition are examples of the term’s usage:

If the client group undertakes due diligence, they may check references and visit similar projects, including ones completed by your firm.

Yes, he is right: “and exercised all due diligence, to ensure”, is a higher test than mere “reasonableness”.

The protections for reasonable belief and due diligence will also apply in that circumstance.

Okay I’m already noting several aspects that can help us reach a shared understanding, however let’s diligently persevere to seek yet another usage.

Wikipedia has a nice summation of this element:

“Carefulness and persistent effort or work—is one of the seven heavenly virtues. It is indicative of a work ethic, the belief that work is good in itself”. 

The contributors also reference this concept of diligence and the attention we should give it from a perspective of Christianity:

“In Christianity, diligence is the effort to do one’s part while keeping faith and reliance in God.

In other words, diligence and faith are two sides of a mystery. One does not know how, despite one’s effort, it all works out; but diligence, when combined with faith, assures spiritual success. 

Diligence as one of seven virtues describes thoroughness, completeness, and persistence of an action, particularly in matters of faith”.

Now we’re getting there!

So let me merge, edit and insert some “Ro-notations”, and… 

What’s that? 

Yes I made that word up. 

A “Ro-notation” is an additional notation or takeaway created by me, Rochelle. So instead of an annotation I call it a “Ro-notation”.

Anyway let’s see what we can develop to improve our common comprehension of “due diligence” and being dedicated to it:

“Careful, dedicated, persistence with intent to take action for the higher good, for the benefit of all. It is with steadfast forbearance and patience that we commit to be dedicated to not only doing no harm, rather to also do all things virtuously, fully and regularly in faith”.

Or let me offer a simpler statement:

“Always work to ensure you are trying to do  what is right. Be tenacious and purposeful about it and seek to be “Becoming” in all things”. 

Then I diligently applied my Ronotations and shared with you a very personal tale of “43 Hours”. 

That’s right, 43 hours. 

Not a typo. 

While I realize crime dramas have conditioned us to accept the importance of the first 48 and that 48 hours is two days, what I’m about to share happened suddenly and quicker than that.

So what happened in those 43 hours? 

More like what didn’t happen.

Lessons learned I’m now ready to testify as to how this mystery unraveled and what its implications are for us along our shared path we call, “Becoming Today”.

You’ll need to check out the original post to laugh your way through my despair (audibly giggling, she says).

Yes it took longer than anticipated when I thought I had it all figured out.

As I shared in our discussion of “Reignite”,  as I battled

I was ready for launch. To return to full participation I mentioned that I found myself in the “Depths of Dormancy” and “Rolling Away The Stone” I noted, “isn’t it ironic that you are asked to be the strongest when you feel the weakest?”.

That was what I was going through, trying to battle physical issues to keep up with day to day tasks. As I struggled with my inability to perform I had no choice but to reflect on why I may be going through this. I still really don’t have all the answers and probably never will but certainly I knew what it would take to overcome.

Time. And trust. I needed to slow down on some of the busy work and use this time to reflect upon deeper issues.

So I did. While it did take a few days for me to steady myself, regain my strength and clear my vision, I’m now ready to Reignite!

BUT… wait… Stop right there! We have a problem, yes another.

I was presented with challenges upon challenges  to strengthen me. Test my resolve, reaffirm my commitment to always being “Becoming”.

The car battery taught me lessons of vulnerability and trust as I literally lost my ability to travel. To go forward. Rather than trying to force a reconditioning I needed to open up to the new and unknown. Look for answers in alternate places and trust that I could be delivered to the resource I needed. 

Rather than struggling, trying to force resolutions or find work arounds I needed to allow myself to step out into the light in new directions knowing the answers would reveal themselves. 

The first smoke detector was a reminder to be vigilant. To be prepared and safety first. Those strengths come from the same Source. It was an indicator that things can change in an instant. With just one  …..SCREECEECHH! … Suddenly my night and the next several days were completely changed from what I was anticipating.

It truly was a call to wake up and pay attention.

The flashing night light was a signal that I needed to be activating my motions. To move about and share more light through me. To let my light shine to all those I would again encounter as I had not left the house due to illness, storms, and batteries for 43 days .

Yes there is that number again. Little did I know that as I ventured out to retrieve that new battery, that in the next 43 hours, the Lord would show me why I had the test of the 43 days prior.

At that 43rd hour, when the second smoke detector alerted, it was a reminder that He is present and doing all He can for me, as long as I do my part in this co-creation.  Things suddenly in His time came together and made perfect sense.

To summarize here the takeaway is to trust and believe. Heeds the signs yes, and do our part to prepare and be ready to do what we must. 

On Wednesday I noted I was becoming renewed, refreshed and rejuvenated. My energy is restored and I am sharing and putting the lessons learned into action. 

At least I am now after this past weekend.

Those instances and events reminded me of the importance of being prepared for what may spring ahead of us at any time. 

Connected with my “43 Hours” of battles with batteries, as I descended a ladder I found myself looking at this device and discovering a few other unwelcome surprises too.

In  perhaps an all too prevalent reminder that the time is near for a good spring cleaning, very quickly it became obvious to me, as the gnats, gunk and grime chose to rain down upon me as I worked to disconnect the angry device.

It’s amazing that so much could accumulate in such a small area and not be noticeable from beneath. I mean I walk under it at least 20 times a day I guess I just never look up there.

Anyway as I thought this needs a good Spring cleaning I realized just how close we are to the change in seasons. In fact for us, we’ll “Spring ahead” this weekend. 

The return of Daylight Savings Time, leaves us with more to do than reset clocks and try to remember how to change that one, that confounds us every six months. 

It’s time to refresh and renew not only items in our life, but also ourselves.

This too I was given clues too, just as I realized the failing batteries in the smoke detectors were due to the fact that they expired a year ago, I became very aware of all the other things that I needed to restock and refresh my supplies of.

Vitamins, supplements need to be refilled and even pen and ink have been running out this week. I use a lot of different colors in my note taking and sudden;ly I was digging through the supplies, needing a new red pen, now the pink has run out, time to refill my favorite ballpoint, and now even another green one. 

Looking at some of the traditional symbols associated with this seasonal change, Spring has generally been accepted as the start of something new,  a time of new beginnings, a period of progress, the blossoming of new things, birth, growth  and creating new life.  All very “Becoming” aspects. 

During our conversation about researchers’ suggestions for adjusting your sleep schedule in advance of the clocks,  we learned a recommendation from the group of doctors is to set your clocks ahead before going to bed at your normal time, Saturday night, instead of waiting till the next morning. 

Plus here’s a “Ro-notation” for you, do not try this at home. Do not attempt what my Grandfather always did, which was to set alarm clocks to get everyone up in order to make sure all the clocks were all adjusted at precisely two in the morning. 

The sleep experts also say on Sunday morning you should go outside and get some direct sunlight to realign your body’s rhythms. I do not believe this step is necessary in cases of thunderstorms, snow falling, tornadoes or an ice event. 

Now those who do not take steps to ensure they are well rested and realigned for the seasonal shift could be in store for some scary times on the roads over the next week. 

A different study reveals that in the week after the switch to Daylight Savings Time, the number of fatal traffic accidents in the United States increases by six-percent. The majority of those occur in the morning hours, and the further west you are in the timezones the more affected you are by time change. 

Now just because the Vernal Equinox is approaching and the Northern Hemisphere will be entering the Spring season does not necessarily mean all of us will be. So how do you determine what season you may be preparing for? I’m glad you asked, because that’s what we’ll contemplate together now.

This part of the post will require participation on your part. After all, it’s designed to help you clarify your vision, accept your purpose and determine the next step to take along your individual path towards “Becoming”.

Begin by asking yourself some questions. There are no wrong or right answers, since there are questions you are asking yourself about your Self. 

Undertake a self examination of your  past, present, and future making sure to base your questions focusing on your hopes and dreams. These are intended to build a foundation for undertaking some life changes. 

I know, someone over there says “that’s not easy” and I hear her on the other side saying “change is tough”; Yes, nonetheless it is required to continue growing, developing and living.

Asking yourself hard questions plus answering them thoroughly and honestly can help you determine how ready you are to achieve your goals, makes dreams come true and truly live a life of “Becoming”. 

Quite simply you are preparing to clarify your life’s purpose. For some this may be their first exploration, for others it may be time to revisit earlier lessons learned and for others yet, we realize this is an ever-developing aspect in life. Therefore as seasons change so may our focus, needs and wants. 

An example of this from Scripture is the Apostle Paul. He knew, understood and accepted  the mission to which he was called.

He lived a very “Becoming” acknowledging God had called him to preach the gospel (Ephesians 3:8-9). He devoted his energy, talents, experiences and opportunities to accomplish this purpose.

Focus on your responses for a while, then ask yourself 

What is my life’s purpose?  My mission? Where do I direct my focus? And why? Write down ( or type) your answers. Keep them where you can refer to them as a roadmap or guidebook for orienting your path. 

Eight Questions to Forecast Your Season

  1. Is the focus of my “Becoming” something I truly desire? 

It needs to be about you, for you and from within. To qualify your answers also take note of these inquiries. Am I pushing myself to be something I’m actually not? Am I being something I’m not just because others expect it of me?

  1. Who will I have to become in order to make my goal a reality?

You already know unlike the song you can not remain the same. So now is the time to focus on affecting positive impactful and effective methods of change. This could involve thought processes such as what must I do differently? Write out your revised  goals and review them daily. Take small steps.  Set achievable tasks for each day along the way. Change is inevitable and necessary. You realize you can not keep doing things the same way over and over and expect different results. Sound familiar? So even though Einstein never actually said it, focus on sanity anyway. 

  1. What have I done in the past to try and achieve this goal?

Did you have success? If so, how do you make it happen again? If not, determine what you need to do differently. Develop  new strategies that are more in line with who you are “Becoming”. Release the past, let go of old ways and focus on building momentum forward and upward.

  1.  What are your “whys”?

Continue asking yourself “why” you want what you want. Why is it good? Why will it improve your life? Why is it of benefit to the greater good? Why aren’t you making progress? Why are you feeling better about yourself and circumstances?

  1.  What will you have to give up in order to make your “Becoming” a reality?

In order to receive you have to make room for it. We all need to release parts of our past. This can include identities, relationships and for some physical belongings. All can contribute to limiting us and contribute to keeping us from our goals. 

  1.  What’s stopping you?

In answering this question you’ll discover what’s preventing you from taking action. Often a habitual response. Somewhere along the way you trained yourself to accept less, or make do. Take the limits off. Open yourself to opportunity and possibilities. It’s time to shift your attitude into high gear and believe in yourself and who you are truly “Becoming”. 

  1. What does your success look like?

Having a clear picture of what life will look like for the future you is essential to assisting you in achieving your goals. It is a great motivator to be able to clearly see who or what your “Becoming”. Some may try vision boards, for others just keeping the image top of mind, in their hearts or reinforcing the picture by writing or speaking about it  is a great motivator. Visualize your success creating clarity to sharpen your focus.

  1. Will this choice move me forward or keep me stuck?

We all have choices we must make every day. More than likely every hour. Keep this in mind and come to understand the ramifications of these actions. Will skipping a step aid your progress?  Or cause you to trip? Is this better than that? Yes it may be harder, that way, but I never said any of this would be easy. So refresh yourself and get ready to take renewing actions.

Now our shared path of “Becoming Today” has reached the far shore of planning and it’s time to continue moving forward. So grab the handrail if you need to as we discuss steps you can take to safely and efficiently be “Crossing Your Bridge”.

Thorough self examination, meditation, contemplation and prayers are the places where we can begin to formulate the answers we seek. In order to continue building momentum, which I believe should always be focused on moving both forward and upward, let’s revisit our earlier discussions to be better prepared and equipped for the trip ahead. 

Finding the freedom to renew, rejuvenate and revitalize yourself begins with an understanding of all that being free means. Here is an abbreviated version of  my 

8 Steps to Freedom:

  1. Check and Protect your Self Esteem

Your self-worth has everything to do with the ability to free yourself. Challenge your negative thinking.Be aware that long-held thoughts and beliefs can feel normal and factual, even though they are not. Often these false perceptions are just opinions devoid of any truth.  Then make sure you are not getting involved in patterns of self delusion or accepting falsehoods as the truth.

  1. Live Authentically and Expectantly 

Always be expecting, and expecting nothing less than the best.  Let your inner light be your guide. Connect with the Spirit through quiet reflection, meditation or prayer. Seek the wisdom of your heart-center when you are faced with important choices and decisions.

Be your highest self. Remember who you are intended to be.

Let go of habits, routines and people that no longer serve you. Release guilt and anxiety. Surround yourself with those who love you, believe in you, and only want the best for you.

Speak your truth. Find your voice. Use your words. Express yourself. Do not limit yourself. The truth will set you free.

Learn to trust your intuition.  Follow your heart, your spirit and the mind will follow. I knew for decades, those hunches were right. Plus when I did listen I was either very successful or well protected, whatever the need of the moment was. At the same time though, society would try to mock “women’s intuition”. Well you know what? “They” only attack what they fear.

Recognize connections. There is an invisible web of connection between people, events and even the places in your life. This is how God nudges and guides you towards your destiny.I know and have given testimony many times, in many ways as to how I have been led throughout my life. I only ask that it continues and truly it is. 

Live courageously. What would you do if you were not afraid? Take risks. Step out of your comfort zone. What happens when you make a decision, it either works or it doesn’t. Go ahead I dare you to, just like I did myself!

Celebrate Life.  Live it. Feel it. Be it. Honor yourself by living every day to the fullest.

It was only through conquering my fears and doubts, accepting help and challenges plus surrendering all that I could that I realized I am now and will continue to be living my truly authentic life. It’s all part of “Becoming” and has delivered me to a place where I can finally honestly, boldly proclaim:

“I love Life. I love the Lord. I love myself”.

  1. Empower Yourself and Learning to Say “NO”

Dive into your strength. You’re only limited by your own thoughts. Create a shift in your thinking;  empower yourself to live the life you want. Ask for ( and receive) the support of your higher power. 

Accept that you can and should say “NO”. For women this is often hard. We are not being selfish, if we have to put someone off for a while. Nancy Reagan tried to teach us all to just say “NO” to drugs plus how many times have you had to tell him, “NO”!

  1. Practice Forgiveness

You can not create a state of “Becoming”, if you aren’t willing to let the former or current  realities go.This is a vital part of “Becoming”. Not only forgiving others for perceived wrongs, and asking for forgiveness from those you may have hurt but also forgiving yourself.

It is then, and only then, that you can let go of anger, guilt, shame, or any other feeling limiting your growth. Let it go. Face forward, look upward and you get busy moving on.

  1. Be Grateful

See the good in everything and everyone. Cherish beauty, kindness, love, and joy. I believe everyday should be Thanksgiving. I am constantly giving gratitude for all things including the lessons we sometimes don’t want or think we need.

Being grateful puts us in a better state. One of bliss, joy and abundance. When you decide to adopt and commit to an attitude of gratitude, God listens and rewards you. 

  1. Realize Reactions Resonate

As one of my favorite quotes from Chuck Swindoll reminds us,  “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.”

So begin by accepting the fact that you are  co-Creator. You are more than capable of choosing the right actions when pushed, promised or promoted. Accept Personal Responsibility.  In order to fully accept your reality, you must take ownership of any role you may have played, good or bad, in leading you to where you are.  When you do, then you can work on decisions for the next steps. 

  1. Love Thy Self

Be free to love yourself. When you do, then you are free to love others. Be vulnerable. Opening yourself to growth. To me it seems the best way  to heal is by learning a lesson from the situation, then using it to be “Becoming”.  Channel your thoughts, intentions, desires and energies into focusing on growth and building that momentum that moves both forward and upward. 

Do not get stuck in the “coulda, woulda, shoulda” mentality. Hanging onto to what should have happened, what could have happened, or what you wished would have happened, give yourself motivation to get over it. Release it and heal. Or keep a grip on it and be paralyzed; immobilized by feelings of pain and bad memories. 

8. Always Be “Becoming”

Let your emotions flow freely. Do not keep things bottled up. Burying your feelings not only causes the pain to  remain, oftentimes it can increase and have negative physical effects on our bodies ( and minds) as well.  You are not the only one who has ever been afraid to face a negative or painful emotion, just realize you need to do it. Face your fears, breathe and let them pass through you. Do not allow them to define you. 

In the meantime focus on gaining momentum, which I believe should always be focused forward and upward. Remember to set your clocks ahead, then join us come Monday, when our paths intersect again, here “Becoming Today”. 

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