Saying goodbye, giving thanks
In the last 11 months, we’ve lost so many great thinkers and compassionate spiritual teachers: Nelson Mandela, Maya Angelou, Angeles Arrien, and now Dr. Masaru Emoto, who passed on Oct. 17. I’m starting to think that they’re all leaving this plane and together starting another kind of movement to help our planet in a more powerful way.
As with the others, my heart was heavy with the passing of Dr. Emoto – such a beautiful human being who gave so much of his life to studying the effects positive words and prayer have on water! Since human beings are made up of about 70 percent water, he believed we could heal so much through having gratitude and loving thoughts for ourselves and others. Although controversial and eccentric, his experiments on water are thought provoking. He authored several books. One particular quote from Messages from Water really resonated with me, “We must begin by learning what it means to have enough … to feel gratitude for having been born on a planet so rich in nature and gratitude for the water that makes our life possible. If you open your eyes you will see that the world is full of so much that deserves our gratitude. When you have become the embodiment of gratitude, think about how pure the water that fills your body will be. When this happens, you, yourself will be a beautiful shining crystal of light.” His last word before passing was “Arigato,” which translates to “thank you” in Japanese.
Learning what it means to have enough isn’t always easy. We live in a world that bombards us with ads to buy the next best thing we can’t live without, while speeding through time, and feeling we don’t have enough of it. This leads us into more debt, which adds to the cycle of never having enough money or enough time to pay it down. This is the opposite of being fulfilled, content, and having enough.
I worked with a woman who is close to retiring. All her life she had a high-powered job, fancy homes and all of the things that go into them, expensive cars, and loved her status in the community. After 2008, she had lost all of that and really had a hard time coming to terms with downsizing her life and feeling like she had to start over. She viewed downsizing as a failure and didn’t trust herself to make good financial decisions going forward.
Together we uncovered that her “feeling like a failure” was a familiar pattern growing up. She felt like a constant disappointment to her mother. So achieving success and proving she wasn’t a failure were her main goals. She became so driven and consumed with work that it wasn’t uncommon for her to feel completely exhausted. Now that she’s downsizing her life, she has the opportunity to slow down and re-think how she would live again. She needed to learn what it means to have enough. It wasn’t easy for her to stop comparing herself to others who seemed to have more material status. I reminded her of the past; how much harder her life was with constant exhaustion keeping that dream alive, and the worry of never having enough money or time.
She needed to see the truth of her financial situation, so we created a Cash Flow Statement. This helped her to understand how to move forward; how much she still needed to earn to continue to save for retirement, where she needed to reduce her expenses, and how many days she needed to work. She came to realize how fortunate she really was to be renting a beautiful home, to have a job she loves – even at a slower pace – not to have debt, to have a retirement fund that she’s still able to contribute to, and how full her heart was to have a loving husband.
In this case, let’s look at what Money Types played a role in her life and how she was able to shift them. She literally went from feeling like a disappointment (Martyr), being overly controlling (Tyrant), and not trusting her own decisions (Innocent). She shifted to feeling and knowing gratitude for what is working in her life, surrendering to that life, and feeling much more content (all Magician). She was able to envision what she wanted her life in retirement to look like (Creator/Artist) and move in that direction to make it happen (Warrior).
In this season of thanksgiving, stay awake to what IS working in your life and be grateful for all of it. In spirit, I dedicate this article to Dr. Masaru Emoto. Arigato, Dr. Emoto. Thank you for sharing your profound wisdom with the world.