Find Your Sparkle by Meredith Gaston | Extract | Hardie Grant Books
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Meredith Gaston on how to find your sparkle on those lacklustre days

11 Nov 2019 | Cherry Cai

We all need a pick-me-up every now and then. Find Your Sparkle by Meredith Gaston is the perfect bad-day antidote with encouraging words and heart-felt affirmations to improve your day and change your mindset from glum to grateful. If you’re feeling a little lacklustre, Meredith is here to help you through it with some ‘sparkle-care’.

When Feeling Lacklustre

A very important part of sparkle-care is paying attention to the wise, encouraging messages we constantly receive. Profound invitations for healing and flourishing can open up to us through the challenging seasons and states of being in our lives, bringing us the perspective and motivation we seek. With self-awareness we begin to realise that our spirits will tickle us in all manner of ways to get our attention if we ignore them, and illuminate our forward paths faithfully if we allow them.find your sparkle meredith gaston illustration 2

We are not alone when we long for more meaning, more connection and more kindness in our lives. This longing for more is collective. The challenging states that we experience personally are known and felt by all human beings in all manner of ways. When our spirits seek deeper and more sustaining experiences our yearning can present itself in different, often challenging states of being. Restlessness, depression, conflict, disharmony; even pain and physical illness can be understood and tended to as very important messages from deep within. While lacklustre states and experiences can be unpleasant to endure, they are valuable calls to tend to our spiritual wellbeing – to explore, nourish and nurture ourselves as deeply and lovingly as possible. When viewed not as failings but rather as invitations to look more deeply, love more deeply, or choose differently, we may experience and explore lacklustre states as gateways to our bliss.

Our negativity, cynicism and sarcasm can be our world-weariness at play. A disconnection from the mystery of life. A call for us to return to gratitude, humility and grace. Our irritability and grumpiness can be an expression of unfulfilled desires of our souls; invitations to balance rest and play in our daily lives; to dial down our seriousness and reconnect with joy and nurture our sense of humour. Our fatigue might be directing us to reassess the ways we use and expend our precious personal energy. Perhaps we need to better protect our personal boundaries to nurture our vitality? Perhaps we are not enjoying the work that we do, and are being encouraged to make positive change? It might be a call to observe and workshop relationships and circumstances that deplete us. In any case, tiredness is a wonderful call for us to slow down, tread lightly and go gently with our spirits.

Our self-pity might be best understood as disconnection from our own power. A call to take responsibility for the thoughts we think and the choices we make, and an invitation to reconnect with our deep inner strength and courage. We are often quick to feel victimised by our circumstances, failing to acknowledge just how much we can do about them! Empowering ourselves through conscious and selective thinking, exploring our self-healing, self-soothing powers and activating our creativity are great ways to face and combat our self-pity. Similarly, our self-doubt can be read as a disconnection from our intuition. Doubting ourselves invites us to reconnect with our immense inner wisdom, and to surrender to faith in being divinely guided and protected through life. With such magical awareness we awaken to infinitely greater love and support, and our self-belief and confidence naturally blossom.

Physical and emotional clutter that crowds us can be taken as a call to see what we cannot let go of in our lives. How might we be seeking to fi ll real internal voids or needs by jam-packing our calendars or accruing more things? Noticing our cluttered thoughts, agendas or spaces invites us to consciously create breathing room in our lives and enjoy greater peace and fl ow. By honestly reassessing our values and priorities, we are able to embark on healing and refreshing decluttering journeys that can radically elevate our spirits and profoundly improve our daily lives.

Rather than feel ruffled by feelings of dissatisfaction, we can courageously accept the call that our dissatisfaction presents to us and design our lives in better alignment with our innermost values and desires. When we are dissatisfied we intuitively know that there is more to life waiting for us. Our spirits are encouraging us to move towards the bliss and joy we sense is possible for us. When we live our own lives in our own way with

a firm focus on what truly matters to us, not what matters to those whom we might wish to please or impress, we find the deep and lasting satisfaction we seek. Stepping up to dissatisfaction with action is a truly satisfying course.

Another common and confounding feeling we can face is a sense of purposelessness in life. We may question why we are here, and what the point of our lives really might be. In my eyes, experiencing a sense of purposelessness is our invitation to acknowledge that we are significant; that our spirits matter; and that our contribution matters. It is a call for us to connect and reconnect with the miracle of life and our oneness with life and each other. Rumi reminds us that in being human we are not just a drop in the ocean, we are the entire ocean in a drop. The entire universe is within us, empowering and fortifying us with magical energy, moment to moment. Find out what it is that ignites your inner sparkle by noticing when you feel joy. Allow your joy to illuminate the purpose of your life’s energy. By doing what we love and doing it lovingly while caring for others and our earth, we swiftly reconnect with a sense of meaning and purpose in our lives.

find your sparkle meredith gaston illustration 1In addition to calling upon and cultivating our emotional intelligence to fortify and enliven our sparkles, balance our moods and refresh our states of mind, it is important to nurture ourselves physically in order to support the wellness of our spirits. Our bodies are after all our mind and spirit homes on earth, and when our bodies are nourished our sparkles may flourish all the more. Choose quality, natural whole foods, drink ample fresh water, enjoy fresh air, digital detoxes, time in nature, healthy, uplifting personal rituals, and rest and relaxation. Daily self-care practices such as these can swiftly, deeply restore our freshness and clarity for life. Should uneasy states of being become stubborn or persistent, you may wish to explore the possibility of biochemical imbalances, food intolerances, allergies or compromised gut health. These physical things can directly and profoundly affect the mental, spiritual and emotional states we experience.

While some food cravings are due to biochemical imbalances in the body worth exploring in terms of dietary change and supplementation, powerful metaphysical explanations may also shed light on food cravings. Sweet cravings often manifest when we lack sweetness in our lives. We might ask ourselves, ‘How can we experience more sweetness and joy in our lives?’ Junk-food cravings can call us to heal our self-sabotaging habits. We might ask ourselves, ‘How can we feel more worthy of our own love and care?’ Overeating can be our way of protecting ourselves from pain by ‘stuffing down’ our challenging thoughts and feelings. We might ask ourselves, ‘How can we support ourselves to courageously see and rewrite our stories?’ Under-eating can call us to appreciate and care for ourselves with true tenderness and compassion. We might gently ask, ‘How can we see our own strength and beauty? How can we fall more in love with ourselves?’ When we quieten down our busy thoughts, tune in and ask our bodies what they truly want and need, we may receive profound intuitive guidance. Concerns around food are often calls to explore the hungry parts of our emotional bodies that need our honesty, compassion and attention. We can accept such invitations courageously, learning to satisfy our real hunger for life in nurturing ways that allow our spirits to blossom.

Our spirits are always at the helm. When we nurture them lovingly, all things in and around us seem to fall into place. When our spirits are nurtured, issues we face that once seemed extremely complex can all of a sudden become clearer to understand and simpler to resolve. Hurries or worries that once seemed insurmountable can be illuminated and present themselves for transformation. We are in this life together, learning, growing and changing. We can support ourselves and each other to practise true self-care and self-love and, in doing so, find our sparkles.

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All text and images extracted from Find Your Sparkle by Meredith Gaston
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