I love daffodils. Along with the rest of nature I find their beauty uplifting. When I tune into their beauty to appreciate them I tune out of the solution focussed concrete way of thinking that so often consumes me. I forget tasks and goals and appreciate my life for just what it is.
I’d like to recommend slowing down to focus on beauty. I almost want to write ‘when you can make space for it’, but in fact I’d recommend putting it at the centre, perhaps even building a life around it. We can all put daffodils around our house, but how can we make beauty more central? Indeed, why would we?
It is easy to think of beauty as an add-on, something you can have when you’ve earned it. This is especially true in a culture that may often be goal centred, focussed on growth and achievement and the concrete and tangible. Certainly this is needed to live and satisfy our physical needs, to live in the world. However, when I put my own restlessness aside, I find I do not need to spend all my time to satisfy these needs. What I thirst for is to be with what is beautiful.
In my personal definition of beauty I’m including the beauty of connection with others, of living in a meaningful way and of simple pleasures (hot buttered toast springs to my mind). I find it easy to forget these are also beauty, not just the moments with a sunset, a flower, or a work of art. There is also a beauty in sadness and tragedy, when life is stripped bare. So many of the clients I see in my counselling practice are beautiful when they show themselves honestly, a place their despair and anguish leads them to.
What I find beautiful may be quite different from others. Perhaps for you it is a walk by the canal in sunshine, a moment on a bench on the village green, time gardening, a fine dinner, your favourite painting or play. I suggest that all of these are necessary, that they give shape and meaning to a life. If you are fortunate enough that your work reveals beauty to you, so much the better.
When beauty is absent, something inside us dies. I believe that functionalism in life is the enemy of beauty and a life well lived. Sometimes you may find yourself depressed, lost, or wondering why you’re not happy when you apparently have everything you want. Maybe beauty and therefore truth and meaning are missing.
If you’d like to talk in confidence about this or other issues, please contact me at [email protected] I offer a free half hour telephone assessment to see if working together could be beneficial for you. If you’d like to understand more about Counselling and Life Coaching please watch my videos at http://www.creativedifference.org.uk/what-is-counselling/ and http://www.creativedifference.org.uk/what-is-coaching/.
Counsellor and Life Coach in Marlborough and Hungerford