As I was packing for my latest teaching adventure, the 5 day Joyous Being Retreat, in Kona, Hawaii, I realized that part of my joy rests in traveling lightly. This practical insight, that came as I was trying to figure out how to pack for a 13 day trip (that was part work, part play, and included packing a mini art studio into my luggage for our mask making foray,) has yielded deeper self-realizations. I love when that happens.
With some planning and determination, I was able to fit it all, with a little room to spare, in my regular suitcase that can be carried on a plane (Though TSA frowns upon scissors, exact-os, glue and tubes of paint in carry-on, so I checked it). Traveling lightly has become a powerful metaphor for how I wish to move through the world. And I’ve realized this has been a big part of my personal transformation story. When I thought about it, this little intention / prayer came.
I intend to live lightly on this earth, in my body, heart, soul and mind.
I intend to travel lightly through this world, leaving and giving more than I take.
I intend to hold my work lightly until it becomes the play it was meant to be from the beginning.
I intend to hold others lightly and respectfully.
When I fall short in my intentions, I re-up and stretch my commitment to travel lightly through life.
I’m in another phase of releasing and lightening my load. (My mom would probably roll her eyes.) My entire life, I’ve been known to go through periods where something comes over me and I am compelled to let go of as much as I possibly can, on all levels of my reality – physical, emotional, mental, energetic – so that I can travel lightly. It’s been a thing with me.
I’ve released, repeatedly, the bulk of my material possessions (and sometimes my sons’, which I’m sure they’ll process in their own time and therapy 🙂 During particularly intense release times, I’ve shaved my head, burned a lot of my art and writing, and did serious house cleaning on the majority of my possessions and even relationships. I think of it as life cleansing. (And it seems there’s always more to do).
From the outside, it’s probably looked a bit intense. From the inside it’s been relieving, clarifying and wildly liberating. I now see how it has been a life-long practice of non-attachment (that my sons do actually appreciate. Sidebar: I engaged them in the process when they were old enough to understand, so they too know how to travel lightly). The practice of letting it all go (when it feels good and right) has helped me to travel more lightly through this life, and I’m grateful to the enigmatic internal impulses that set this clearing process in motion. Bottom line, it simply feels better to me to travel lightly. It’s part of my joy.
Here’s a few questions you might want to consider and contemplate:
What does traveling lightly mean to you?
Are there places you need or want to lighten up?
What are you ready and willing to release?
What would the world look like, be like, feel like if we all traveled a little lighter?
I welcome your insights from your own lightening process, so feel free to leave a comment below.