Your New Best Friend

Life has taught me this. As far as I can tell, living alone turns out not to be the same thing as being lonely. Just recently I’ve been making friends with what “IS” and we’ve been getting along pretty well so far.

Change On Purpose - Tim McDonnell - Your New Best Friend

Photo by Chance Agrella, courtesy of

Have you ever lost money or time on things that turned out to be not so important after all? I have. In fact, I’ve thrown away a LOT of time and money I’d love to have back just “holding on” to things… furniture, jobs, memorabilia, people, beliefs, identities… all of which ended up having far less impact on my quality of life than I ever believed they would.

Over the past eight years I’ve changed homes about six times. Along the way I lost more money and stuff than I care to account for. In that same period of time I’ve landed and lost a couple of dream jobs, broken ties with some old friends and gained new ones that I hope will never go away.

A few minutes ago I was watching a spectacular sunset on the patio of yet another brand new apartment. Melting in my hand was a frosty margarita made from ingredients I brought with me from three states away and two moves ago – net beverage cost, almost free.

Most of the money I “need” to stay afloat for the next couple of months is out there in “receivables” and I’ve been stressing heavily about it today. But I as I watched the clouds change color and flash from the inside with lightning that’s on its zig-zaggy way to San Antonio, I was also given a blinding glimpse of truth.

I’m really okay.

In this moment, nothing is lacking that I honestly require to be okay:

  • I matter to people who matter to me
  • My body is whole and I can move around at will
  • I have made incredible memories that no one can take away
  • I have three beautiful sons who are all healthy and relatively happy
  • I feel great and there’s more beauty around me than I can possibly take in
  • Everything I require to live well is within walking or biking distance of my home
  • No matter how long the receivables take, I can survive for right now on what I have
  • At my lowest point, I have more comforts than most other people in the whole world

Life has invited me to let go of things that I had been clutching pretty tightly. I miss my Mom. I miss the library I was collecting for nearly forty years. I miss the inheritance I threw away on things that are now mostly all gone. The thing is, as I watch the sunset and look around at what I still “have” it’s clear to me that I’m more than just okay.

In fact, I’m blessed.

In retrospect, I think it was the clutching that actually cost me more than the material losses themselves. Before now I had never really considered that cost or how much energy it took – energy that could have gone into other things and better experiences. The endless “holding on” was blinding me to what was in front of me – available to me – as if clinging to the old was cutting me off from the flow of the new somehow.

The whole universe works in waves… sounds, colors, tides, seasons.

It should have been obvious to me before, but now I get it. It seems the point is to quit struggling so hard against the part of the wave we’re actually on in the moment. Up. Down. It’s all relative and it all goes in cycles, around and around.

Do I still have goals, dreams, aspirations?

Sure I do. That’s vision, not resistance. But when I look around and ask myself what’s truly LACKING in my life at this moment, the honest answer is NOTHING. As I learned reading Beachcombing at Miramar, we’re all cosmic beachcombers in a Richard Bode kind of way. Whatever washes in on the next wave is right for me, right now.

The secret I’ve discovered is that when I take the energy I used to waste on resisting what is and pour it into all those goals, dreams and aspirations instead, they seem more within reach than ever before. I’m slowly learning to float with it all like a feather and deal with life as it really is – instead of the way I wish it would be – and we’re becoming good friends.

Your input matters – please join the conversation: Have you ever had an opportunity to make friends with what IS? How did the experience of resistance versus acceptance make a difference in your life?