by Mary Anne Radmacher
I amused clients today at a trade show. While engaged in conversation, suddenly an alarm sounding like a motorcycle engine, birds chirping, or chimes would sound from my iPhone. I had preset alarms to sound throughout the day to remind me to SET MY OWN SAIL. It’s a process I use when I know I am going to be very busy and really externally focused. I use systems that remind me to see the joys, to act from my core impulses regardless of my setting. In a trade show there is a lot of pressure to fulfill the “role” of a creative person. And yet, I wanted to remind myself, beyond expectations and roles…
No one is better at being me than me. I had many opportunities to choose and embrace my own unique way. And I did. Today I remembered that clients do not choose my work because of an image or an expectation, but because it is created, uniquely, by me. Throughout the day I would remind myself of this and say, “I set my own sails,” under my breath. It was an odd invitation to patience, to empowerment and acceptance. Yes! it was an invitation to see and savor the “honey in my heart.”
So those little reminder alarms helped set my own sail in stalled traffic as a commute that takes 20 minutes in off-time took over two hours. I set my own sail as calls from a toxic former associate came in. Just because the phone rings does not mean I have to answer it. That’s what voice mail is for. That’s a “message” itself. In choosing to see the joys in my day, I get to determine the systems I will use, and what things will get a “yes,” or a “no.”
I set my own sail. I choose. I govern. I see through a lens of my choosing. I make no one else’s decisions for them but I set my own sails. And perhaps tomorrow I will set a few less alarms for myself!
Writer and artist Mary Anne Radmacher shares that people have asked her over the years how she maintains a cheerful outlook in the face of clear and occasionally discouraging circumstances. Her response is that her book called Honey In Your Heart: Ways to See and Savor the Simple Good Things is her visual, concise, inspiring answer to that question.
Here is an excerpt of the introduction: “My days are fully occupied. The many commitments and tasks in each day would happily fill my minutes from dawn to dusk – if I let them. I get to set aside time for the sweetest things in life. I make room in my heart for ‘honey,’ those things which are sweet, healing, and restorative. At the end of the day, these small sweetnesses make up the taste that lingers. These become the real treasures that bring richness to life.”
Mary Anne Radmacher has touched the hearts of tens and thousands with her popular cards, books, posters, journals, and gift books. She conducts workshops and writing seminars on living a full, creative, and balanced life.
She is the author of the following books:
Lean Forward into Your Life
Us: Celebrating the Power of Friendship
May You Walls Know Joy
Courage Doesn’t Always Roar
Live with Intention