What Are You Carrying?

Pick up the heaviest thing you can and carry it. –Jordan Peterson

As a mother and a human who is committed to nurturing, nourishing, and comforting others, especially my children, I choose and try everyday to live consciously, mindfully, and with as open a heart as I can. I’m not always as successful as I’d like to be, but I believe in choosing alignment as much as possible and aiming high.

There is admittedly a downside, though, to attending solely to the emotional, mystical, and spiritual realm. Without grounding, we can float away. We don’t want to become shackled by the isness of life, but ignoring it can also lead us to confusion in an arena with no boundaries or markers that show us where we are and where we’re headed.

What can be a useful antidote to getting lost in the ethereal, the chaotic, and an over abundance of limitlessness?

Well, the answer at least in part is focusing on the tangible, the orderly, and doing the next right thing in form. 

Too much “reality” makes us stiff and brittle, but too much transcendence can cause us to feel unable to take action.

Sometimes, we just need to choose to attend to our responsibilities and be useful. Sometimes it’s not the dream state that will assist us, but rather the decision to take the next right action. 

Sometimes, we just need to “pick up the heaviest thing we can and carry it.” 

Maybe this is an actual thing, like taking out the trash, walking the dog, making the bed, or getting the groceries out of the car. Or perhaps we respond metaphorically by having that difficult conversation, attending to a sad child, or visiting our friend in a nursing home. 

The heaviness of the thing can vary too. Maybe the heaviest thing you can lift is a grocery bag filled with strawberries or thanking your mom for picking you up at your friend’s house. Or perhaps the thing is really heavy, like the box of books you’re taking to the new house or calling your sister after a dispute.

The thing, real or figurative, doesn’t matter. The point is we’re attending to something that matters—to us and to others. We are being helpful, useful, and making a difference. 

Strangely enough, it’s in the isness, in the action, that something mystical actually happens: our spirit, our open-heartedness expands and evolves. Chaos and order, creativity and stability are constantly flowing and dancing and moving together. 

This is the life force and journey. Paying attention to this movement is what gives life meaning. 

What are you carrying today?