I love the games that our English languages plays, like the way ‘ear’ and ‘hear’ are embedded within ‘heart’. Hmmm so is ‘art’! Today I found a new one. ‘Compete’ and ‘Complete’ are distinguished by just one letter ‘L’.
If only we could stop competing with each other and LOVE each other more, wouldn’t the human journey be more complete?
As I reflect, I can see that I’ve been so competitive in my life. I’m not athletic so it didn’t come out in sports and trophies, but I sure did like accumulating every badge possible at camp! I’m not particularly brilliant so it didn’t come out in academic achievements, but I did manage to acquire a few degrees and physical prizes along the way which somehow still made the cut in The Great Purge when we moved west. They are sitting on my bookshelf as I write.
So yes, I can acknowledge a level of competitiveness, but there is something else, something deep within. I can sense something embedded within me that competes. I want to be noticed, known and valued. I worked in places that didn’t value me as a woman or as a contemplative. From this safe distance I can feel a competitive spirit driving me to be accepted and valued as both a woman and the offering of a contemplative pathway. Oh yes, I can see that some of my offerings came from a desire to show those active oriented men a thing or too!
What if I focused on loving? What if self-compassion (noticing and valuing myself) and compassion for others was my driving force instead of competition to be noticed? What if I inserted an ‘l’ into compete? Would I feel more complete? I think I would.
So practically this week how will I do that? I could be more attentive to being in the present moment, to seeing who is around me, hearing what is happening and listening to whoever I am with. I could be more aware of my choices of activities and motivations with a gentle reflection during the day and at the end of the day. I could be attentive to any negative voices that whisper (or shout!) in my mind, anything negative about myself or another, anything that breathes competition and firmly open the escape hatch to let them go. I will not feed those monsters but will set my course to walk gently and bow often, to live from a place of completion not competition.
How about you? ‘Competing’ or ‘Completing’?
Love and prayers
Mystic in Motion
‘Companion on the Way’ of Contemplative Fire
Contemplative Fire Canada (Founder)