During a recent conversation with a friend who I don’t see that often, she confessed that she was, “Doing yoga but not really talking much about it, because I don’t want to be one of those people who talks about it all the time.”
Whilst time was short and we didn’t delve into what that really meant or what drew her to this practice, her apprehension around revealing this aspect of her personal evolution triggered my curiosity. I sensed a fear of judgment, and perhaps loss of individuality.
I think of it as “closeted spirituality.”
And I can say this – without judgment – because I’ve been there myself.
My main reference growing up was “light Catholic” – we had a home full of books and my dad constantly encouraged us to open our minds. When he noticed I was getting bored of attending mass, he put a book about Buddhism in front me and said, “Here, read this. Take what you need from everything that you learn. Create your own personal blend.”
At first, I tiptoed around nurturing my spirituality. It wasn’t something most of my friends at the time had any interest in exploring for themselves.
I was in awe of other people who knew more than I did, but I was afraid to ask. I explored Reiki and new forms of meditation with some people who seemed clear-intentioned but then veered off in a concerning direction. For a time, I felt like I lived a double life as I secretly explored this spiritual avenue whilst showing up for my day job in the tech world.
I felt spiritually isolated until Life hauled me out of that dynamic.
After this, I took time out from my spiritual curiosity until I felt I was “safe” with others whose perspectives supported my evolving awareness as it felt right for me. With each one came a new mentor who helped me peel off the layers. I was able to integrate spirituality within my lifestyle, and be open about it – such a relief.
Fact: you will not lose your Self within group consciousness, provided you’re involved in a healthy community that understands and encourages your desires, which actually means you get to shine brighter.
Fact: If others label you as one of those people who is in reality taking ownership of their deepest curiosities and openly sharing this for communal benefit… then they’re not your kind of people, are they?
We’ve got to start somewhere. It could be meditation, yoga, reading different books, attending nondenominational spiritual gatherings, embracing silence, confiding in a trusted friend or learning to ask without fear of ridicule… whatever feels like a natural next step for you is fine.
When we put more thought and energy into what others think, we inadvertently give them the power to approve or disapprove our actions. And that’s no healthy way to live your life, is it?
Certain people may not be in tune with who you are today. You may have walked along the same path for a while until you both veered off onto your own, which lead in different directions. You can still love them from a different place in your heart, and enjoy meeting at the intersections if they come up.
Honour where you stand now.
You will not “lose” anyone: Life will simply remove people from your path who are no longer in tune or of active service to your personal growth. It may hurt for a while as you adjust. You’ll be fine, and so will they.
You will gain: awareness, other people (or a new way to relate with your existing connections), resilience and confidence.
Ultimately, you will become one of those people who is willing to speak up. You will also draw closer those who resonate with you at a deeper level, who are ready, willing and able to help you along with inspired action.
You will go from self absorbed to self aware.
And that, my friends, is powerful.
It’s safe to come out. It’s safe to be one of those people who is openly curious about their personal development and is willing to show up, share, and invite.
This brief conversation with my friend has been timely for me. I have not wanted to be one of those people who refers to themselves as a coach, although the word (spoken by others) has made its way into conversation as more people come to me for guidance, and our interactions help us evolve individually, together.
I’m getting cozy with walking it and talking it, which is exactly what you’re doing in your own way, so guess what?
You’re one of those people, and so am I, since we’re all connected.
Be proud of your awakenings, because there are too many people living in soul-slumber who need us to show them it’s safe to come out too.
Rise and Shine, my Friends.