You just never know, so be prepared.
Since I began using my compass to follow the crumbs, armed with courageous curiosity, I have experienced and learned many new things. And the more I practice this approach to my life, the greater the possibilities I can see and experience.
However, lately Creation has been challenging me with pop quizzes to let me see for myself if I have more to learn on a particular lesson (Life Is A Pop Quiz). So, while I consciously try and keep my attention on the path ahead of me, being ever present and mindful, taking time to notice, I need a way to simultaneously remind myself of what I have already accomplished.
I had a friend, a very talented and experienced hiker, who, when we hiked together, would stop and have me turn around to look at where we had been, reminding me to find something that I would use as a visual marker for the return trip, something that I could use to help me remember my way back. “You just never know, so be prepared,” was her hiking mantra.
This was exactly what I needed, but all I could think of was some type of cairn for my wayfinding approach.
Cairn: a mound of rough stones built as a memorial or landmark
If I could find some way to illuminate the lessons I had already learned, or was in the process of continuing to learn, then maybe I would stand a better chance when the pop quizzes in my life presented themselves.
There had seemingly been more than just a few lessons I had worked my way through, or at least it felt like there were. I couldn’t create a cairn for each lesson, but there had to be something I could use. The only thing I could think of was to make my way back through all of the Pathways To Possibilities workbook pages I had been keeping and look for a pattern.
I read through the pages, I made notes, and then I tried to categorize what I had learned. I kept at it, trying to simplify as I went along. I needed the bare truth if it was going to be of any help to me making my way in the world.
It took several months, but here is what I eventually came up with:
My Wayfinding Principles
to walk willingly,
and let my life speak.
To walk willingly . . . my way of reminding myself to stay open to the possibilities that life and
Creation present. Armed with courageous curiosity, I have nothing to fear and everything to learn; transformation comes from the journey itself.
Listen deeply . . . seeking first to understand, by listening and hearing, to make visible, the
compassion, empathy, and respect I have for all others. I must also listen to myself.
Breathe slowly . . . I always have a choice. and rather than just reacting when I am unsure
what I should be doing, I will breathe intentionally, and continue breathing intentionally until I am clear on the path I choose to take.
Love fearlessly . . . to truly discover the light of my own true nature, my authentic self, I must
always choose love. I must fearlessly choose to let the love and light of my own true nature shine. I am a beacon.
Live simply . . . to know that there is, in fact, enough. I have enough. To acknowledge and be
grateful for the blessing in this life, for the talents I have been given, and for the opportunities to use those talents to be of service.
Endeavor creatively . . . to realize that the world is not black and white with only one way to do
things, one way to be, or one path to follow. Creativity, my imagination and original ideas, will guide my life.
Let my life speak . . . finally, to let my life be a testament to the lessons I have learned by
making them visible. To know them but not live them is not being true to who I am.
They there were. Seven principles to help me find my way.
I never set out to create a specific number of wayfinding principles. In fact, it felt like the seven I distilled might be a few to many. And though I tried to condense the principles down to a manageable five, I couldn’t. So, seven it is. Creation, why seven?
While Euclid is my hero, Pythagoras is not far behind. The Pythagoreans invested particular numbers with unique spiritual properties; the number seven was considered particularly interesting because it consisted of the union between physical (number 4) and spiritual (number 3).
Physical + spiritual. Thanks, Creation!
Having done this exercise, I decided that, at the end of each year, I will review my Pathways To Possibilities workbook pages for the year and create my Wayfinding Principles for the year ahead.
PS. Do you have wayfinding principles? And if so, what are they? Please add your comments.
To help keep my wayfinding principles visible and in front of me, I have created two cairn products in silver, copper and bronze:
Click to view in the Pathways store.