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The Life Experiment

Updated: Apr 20, 2022

After midnight, as December turned to January, as 2019 turned to 2020, Steve and I talked about what our intentions for the coming year were. I am always full of anticipation for a new year, of hope and wishes. 2020 felt auspicious; I had moved through some big realizations in 2019 and was excited to commence on what felt like a calling. Our friends gone home in the cold quiet of night leaving just the two of us, our kids long asleep, we talked about how being the most authentic versions of ourselves would be the best way we could show up in the new year. Might seem obvious but being completely forthright in our opinions and views was actually not how we normally operated. Both of us apt to skirt an issue, quiet our opinions and avoid confrontation makes for a tricky relationship at times, taking the long road to get to resolution. We agreed we had enough, we were both ready to lean into the discomfort of having the tough conversations needed sometimes. Did we have any idea what laid ahead? And how very much we would get the opportunity to use our truthful voices? WOW, talk about foreshadowing.

Someone recently said that I invite the notion of experimenting with life and I really loved that I invoked that in them. It made me reflective on how I operate and it allowed me to see that actually yes, I do see life as a sort of experiment. Trying on different ideals like a coat, holding it close if it fits or shrugging it off it doesn’t. Having the conviction to allow myself the gift of being fully authentic in myself for the year of 2020 felt like an awakening. It was interesting to see how my new intention manifested. For me it was like floodgates opening; a normally stoic person, I was feeling deep wounds come to the surface and I just wanted to cry all of the time. Some important relationships I had were dissolving and I couldn’t seem to keep my cool about it, I was awash in sadness. For Steve he met the invitation of being honest with feelings of anger. The flood of emotions for each of us was uncomfortable but it was cathartic too. And it was so timely it’s almost eerie. We’ve been given the utmost opportunity to step into this version of truth this year as people became divided.

In the allowance for more truth to come in, to become our beacon for navigating the difficulty of the times we were facing, it opened up some other fun experiments I wanted to try out. I was moving through the floodgate phase and into a stillness almost, a reckoning of sorts. I was becoming ok with the fact that some of the notions and relationships I had would have to change or end in order for me to choose myself and my truth first. I was curious to see what my next experiment would be.

Luckily 2020 is full of lessons! And side note: it might take a major perspective shift but the silver-lining lessons are huge here when you choose to see them. I’d invite you to spend a full 5 minutes pondering this for yourself. Go ahead…I’ll wait.

Lesson one for me this year was adherence to self-truth and authenticity. Done. Lesson two was about immovable faith in the face of uncertainty. Peep any of the blogs I wrote about finding our current house. Lesson three is all about amplification – understanding that when more is required of me, I must become more. And that more is not something to fear, to downplay or to resist. Let me expand.

I have long grappled with a belief system around scarcity and lack, it’s been some of the most interesting work I’ve done on myself in the last decade or so. My default seems to be to “go small” so anytime my boat is rocked I try to find the easiest, smallest, least far-reaching step. But I recognize that I can’t move into the place of abundance I seek, be it financially or other, if I don’t change my beliefs. So I developed a bit of an experiment to see how I could move through this. See it’s one thing to say “well duh, I’m just going to say I want more and then I’ll get more” but it’s quite another to actually change your deep patterned beliefs. That part has to be done before you realize any of the changes you want to see.

Over the summer I was house hunting and I kept having the experience of “finding the one” only to have it either be outside our budget, sell quicker than we could get to it or actually bid on it but not come to an agreement on price. It wasn’t hard to put myself into a state of misery where I just felt like we would never find the right option. But wait, I knew that couldn’t be true. I wholeheartedly believe that if it’s for you, it cannot pass you by. Simply cannot. With that faith I chose to see the outcome differently:

I chose to see it all as evidence of what I wanted, that it did truly already exist. With this I made it my new mission to keep gathering that evidence; I live in the Limestone City, surely finding a limestone farmhouse within a stone’s through of town shouldn’t be that difficult! I checked daily to see what I could find to assure me. I found all sorts of beautiful versions of ‘home’ and each time did a mental check mark, yes Universe, I see you, you are showing me that what I desire exists. And not to give up on it. What could’ve become a sad game of comparison and feeling let down (and yes, I sure did feel that at times) became a positive experience where I could celebrate that immaculate million dollar stone house on 100 acres – even though it was out of my budget it was simply showing me that my desires were real.

I found myself applying this method again. For one of our daughter’s birthday we were packing up essential oil Epsom salts as party gifts. Making things adorable is kind of my jam, anything that puts me in creation mode really. We enjoyed gathering lavender from our garden and drying it, adding it to the salts and finding beautiful fabric and ribbon for the lids. But I felt this pang as I removed the last of my mason jars from the cupboard. I am one of those weird people who love gathering mason jars, are you?? I adore collecting them. And suddenly my stock was dwindling! I had a nearly physical response of sadness which felt over-reactionary but in light of how I had been feeling more emotional than ever I was gentle with myself. I recognized the feeling was one of loss and one of lack – if I give away my jars I will have no jars left (yes I know this might sound ridiculous given the abundance of jars in this world!). So I challenged myself, what if every time I gave away a mason jar more than one would come back in its place? Guess what happened.

A friend came over with honey as a gift one day soon after…in a mason jar. I ordered some elderberry syrup…it came in mason jars. The juice detox I did came packaged up…in 12 mason jars. Suddenly I found myself with dozens of jars. The lesson here again is not just in our ability to physically manifest that which we desire (which we can) but also to keep allowing ourselves the ability to find evidence that what we desire does exist. It cements our new beliefs.

The next level of this expansion experiment is going to be monetary in nature. The same way I could see my mason jars walk out the door only to be replaced with dozens more will be how I see finances. We all have many inherited beliefs around money — how it’s made, how it’s spent, how it’s lost — it can take years to reprogram. I’m a transparent person so I’ll let you know how it unfolds, ok?

From mason jars to money to dogs (I want two by the way, and I’m conjuring up quite the vision of owning their wiggly happy souls) I’m using the principle of this experiment anytime I feel that tightening around desire. Walking the property we’re on now, Steve and I take turns pointing out where the gardens will be planted, which animals will go where, how to bring a water feature to this dry land. I have ZERO issues seeing potential but I do often stop myself from truly believing the possibility. The logical side of me wants to remind myself that we’re renting, the owners have no interest in selling, it would likely be far beyond our means. But somehow we got here didn’t we? Just as it seemed we were out of time and out of luck that limestone farmhouse on over 100 acres happened to pop up.

The reminders are everywhere. I hope you’ll take stock of this today; allow yourself to think of where you’re finding evidence of what you desire already existing. Change your mindset from one of comparison and lack when you see your friend get the car of your dreams and instead celebrate that there’s that helpful reminder that you are capable of conjuring up what you desire. Let it be dreamy, let it be big. We’re closing in on the final months of 2020 and though they’ve brought more challenges than any of us would have ever imagined, I know you’ll also find some silver-lining when you look again. Expand that, make it your mission. Life is never cut and dried, just simply an ever evolving experiment to keep playing with.

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