It’s simple to stay the course in life when we feel delight and joyous synchronicity. But can we live close to the heart of ourselves and the heart of life when we feel disappointment and frustration, grief and pain? Can we stop, pause and be with how we are touched instead of escaping through addictions or rushing to get past it?

Many of us are skilled at turning away from uncomfortable experiences –– you know, that heaviness in your chest, persistent ache in your lower back, anxiety, random pain that signals energetic change is trying to occur. We haven’t been taught to be with our feeling experiences fully. Instead of facing into what we feel, we often deny these inner signals, gut feelings and intuition, ignore our discernment and lose power as we move farther away from ourselves. The ways we avoid, betray and leave ourselves to feel more secure are often so subtle we don’t recognize them as tired strategies that separate us from ourselves and increase a sense of insecurity.

We have a choice. By allowing the natural movement of energy we become more alive, more awake and more truly authentic. When we can be with life’s paradoxes without needing to control them, be with ourselves without needing to escape, then compassion, love, trust and self-realization become available. What if we didn’t run from inner experiences but met them?

This week’s Living Question: What might it be like to live closer to my heart and end the subtle ways I abandon myself?, can be a doorway to begin ending self-abandonment and opening to deepest acceptance. If you’ve been engaging in this LQ program, you may realize that each question, when read or spoken consciously, can offer opportunities to turn toward felt experience as energy moves. Do questions spark a light tingling, warm resonance, sudden pain, expansiveness, contracted resistance, a vacant feeling or simply a deeper breath? Or perhaps you’ve noticed a tendency to figure out an answer. There are many ways back to yourself if you can stay with the feeling of the inquiry.

In this moment now with this week’s question, I invite you to turn attention to what you notice inside. What is present? Can your attention simply be with this? Can you stay true to your whole experience –– the deep ocean of being and the waves of movement –– fully present in this moment? If not, notice how even that thought is deeply accepted in the wholeness of this moment. Can you let that realization in, too?

Life is here, everywhere, now. It evolves endlessly; it seeks wholeness and expands naturally in each undefended changing moment. Our body and inner experiences are holy doorways. We stand on holy ground. Can we let our attention come closer in?