Yesterday, I flat out forgot to take my kids to school. Of course, there is a story behind this filled with hilarity and general confusion (all on my part), but the plain and simple fact is I went to work early & left my kids at home without a ride to school.
I’ve reached a point in my life where I think this is mostly funny with just a hint of self criticism. However, I would not have felt the same 5 years ago. It is in these moments that we witness our growth – if we open our eyes to see.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.”
Each of us is doing our best in each moment. Our “best” in any moment is impacted by many things, but in that moment, it is our best. When we snip at our husband in the evening after a long day of work, making dinner, and checking homework, we are doing our best in that moment. I have never in my life – either in moments of shining or faltering – said to myself, “I would like to be terrible right now.” I trust you haven’t either.
Be gentle with yourself. Be forgiving. Apologize when you need to. Try again. Learn from your experience. Show up, do your best, and let it go.
I often suggest to people this simple question to enable them to look at how lovingly they treat themselves: “If that voice in your head was coming from a friend, would you want to foster that friendship and spend more time with that person?” When we criticize, judge, blame, and demoralize ourselves, we are missing the opportunity to practice lifting ourselves up, believing more fiercely in our possibilities, and experiencing radical self-acceptance. We miss the chance to create lightness. We miss the chance to embrace our humanness.