Are You Living From Your Head or Your Spirit?


“If I love with my Spirit, I don’t have to think so hard with my head.” ~ Peggy Cahn

Within a few days’ time, I received news that two people I know–one a friend and one a high school classmate–have a child with significant, life-threatening injuries as a result of horrific car accidents.

Another friend spent Thanksgiving on life support after she tried to kill herself, eerily close to the one-year anniversary of another friend’s suicide attempt (thank God she was not successful!).

Last week, I spent four nearly sleepless nights in a row coughing and blowing with the head cold of the century while contemplating the lives we make for ourselves.

I believe I now know the difference between living from my head or from my Spirit.

How to tell the difference between head and Spirit

My first sponsor, Shirley Rapp, used to talk to me all the time about how I didn’t know–couldn’t possibly know–anybody’s real story. “Girl,” she’d say, “you gotta just allow people to do the best they can because you don’t know their whole story. You’re just getting bits and pieces.”

Those situations I described? I feel immense sadness around all of them. What I don’t feel is judgment, because I don’t know the entire story behind any of them–no one can except those directly involved.

That’s how you know you’re living from your heart.

Shirley gave me a book way back then called Each Day A New Beginning, Daily Meditations for Women. I was 41 days into recovery. It’s a dog-eared copy now, and Shirley passed on a few years ago but I’ll always be grateful for the ways she modeled unconditional love, faith and service for me.

Each day a new beginning

Shirley talked often about taking my troubles to God, about how reaching out with love will always lighten my load. There’s a reading in the book on October 4 that speaks to that subject. Some excerpts:

The answers we’ve been searching for become known to us when we concentrate less on our problems and more on the gift of love we can give to the travelers we encounter today.

The solutions to our problems are seldom found in our heads. They burst forth from our hearts.

When we’re brittle, cold to others, we close off whatever messages being directed to us.

Our love for others softens us, making it possible for the words and ideas we await to permeate us.

Today is a new beginning

All this stuff about Spirit with a capital S? I believe Spirit to be a collection of all the small spirits–you, me, the next door neighbor, the grocery clerk and even the celebrity spiritual gurus–who decide each day that they want to plug-in. It’s a heart-to-heart thing, one heart talking the language that other hearts understand.

Between the time I started this post and the time I finished it, not only did the bulk of it disappear into the great Cyber Trashcan, so did a major ongoing work gig for 2015. That’s two lost clients in about 10 days. That’s most of my monthly income gone.

I think there’s a reason I had to rewrite this post. After the call, I immediately jumped into my head when I know that good stuff–opportunities, breaks, financial windfalls–comes from my heart, and ultimately, from Spirit.

I almost didn’t rewrite it, you know. Would anybody really miss a Mindful Monday post? Truth is, I would. I needed to write it so I could hear the message.

Live from your Spirit so you don’t have to mess with all that head BS. No need for thanks. Just send some love my way.

Photo courtesy of pippalou

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  1. Beth,

    I just love your story of how you know when you’re in spirit! So true, the connection between heart and spirit is undeniable. I’m happy to send love your way!

  2. Sending love your way, Beth. Our head stuff can get in the way. Hope life makes a shift in a different direction for you soon. The ebbs and flows can be challenging at times. Hang in there!

    • Beth says:

      Cathy, I appreciate you so much! Thank you for the love . . . as Angela tells me, endings are sure beginnings for something else. I’m determined to make lemonade!

      Best to you!

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