The idea that we are all evolving or that we all have the ability to evolve to a higher consciousness is a hot topic in the media. Authors are taking us on a journey into a deeper awareness of ourselves. Lecturers are covering concepts like how to find joy and true happiness and how to help us lead a more authentic life. We are learning the lesson that all the answers lie within. We are discovering the beauty of looking inside ourselves instead of externally for our happiness. The concept of being able to find real fulfillment inside is a gift. It makes you feel all your prior hard knocks in life happened for a reason — to move you toward something greater. It seems that people of all ages are moving into this place of awareness. I question what the key is to evolve to this place since we all seem to arrive at different ages and points in our lives.

It feels as if there is an invisible realm full of guides who are keeping score of our individual falls and triumphs. It’s as if once our falls begin to outweigh our triumphs, we begin to evolve. We are humbled. We are vulnerable. We may first try to distract ourselves with things like work, exercise, shopping, alcohol, drugs or anything that numbs us to the pain. When we tire of the distractions, we finally are free to move toward something more meaningful. We reach for books, listen to talks, share authentic connections, attend concerts and the list goes on. Our intention is just to feel better; we may even be on the quest for a quick fix. But what we soon recognize is that there is no quick fix to evolving.  In story, I coin this as the character shifting from ego to spirit after going through a number of obstacles. In life, I think we go through this shift from ego to spirit on a daily basis. If we are truly evolving, our friendship with the spirit grows stronger. The ego starts to lose ground and begins to feel neglected. This is when change begins.

When we begin to trust our instincts and our vision clears so we may see the full potential impact of our present-day choices on our future, we begin to transcend. When our pain outweighs our pleasure, something has to shift. We recognize that sometimes the choices we make positively or negatively affect others and as we evolve we become more aware and adept at thinking before making decisions. When we actually move into something more, we think about how our choices and our goals could help the greater good. We move into a heightened place of awareness or higher consciousness and we begin to absorb and interpret the sights, sounds and experiences of our life in a new, more evolved way.

I just returned home from a magical experience at a place called Miraval. It is just outside of Tuscon, Arizona. The buzzwords I heard at this place were “mindfulness”, “being present”, “finding your joy”, “breathe” and “moving in a more authentic direction”. The people vacationing there came full of stories and, more impressively, full of hope, as well as vulnerability. Miraval is one of those havens where people can go when they want to dig deeper into themselves and grow to a place of deeper awareness, a place of more. There are life-affirming lectures of all types, a huge array of spa services, every type of exercise imaginable and part of your daily room rate goes toward a massage. On top of that, the food is excellent, served in well-portioned, charming arrangements that are very reasonable calorie-wise. As if that was not enough, it is all-inclusive, except for the alcohol (i.e. once you pay the daily room rate, you do not have to tip). In other words, you can just let go and not worry about anything other than being present or breathing. Miraval also offers a wide array of activities (some of these are at an extra charge) that are designed to help you move past your fears and to feel the gift of evolving.

Since I am currently exploring this concept of how our goals cannot only benefit ourselves but the greater good as we evolve into something more, I plan to do a series of blogs that discuss some of the books that have fallen into my lap at the perfect time – those books that you read at the exact right time in your life – that explore this idea to help guide you to a stronger place of being. This is a message that benefits us all. It is an important one. We all have felt or feel the desire to evolve into something more.