Permission Slips At 40. (& Inspiration To Make Your Own List!)

You don’t need to hear from me, but you also do. A dear friend gave me permission this week to “swear as much as you need to.” I have kept her words on repeat in my head all week.

Every time I think of her message to me I feel like I’ve been dropped into an open field, under a boundless sky, free to run in any direction.

The permission slips we grant ourselves and others as adults aren’t merely hall passes to visit the bathroom during silent reading time in a stuffy classroom; they are inner agreements we make with our wild soul to slip through every stifling boundary line and oppressive impasse.

Permission slips at 40 shout, Yes you can do that and that too! They are the emphatic approval we need to flourish where we are and trust the ambiguity of love to lead us into new adventures.

We have permission, but where do we even begin?

How about with a simple list? A prompt to drum up all the ways we try to confine and contain ourselves.

I have permission to be a beginner and to become an expert in my industry.

I have permission to leave my marriage and to see my partner with fresh eyes.

I have permission to invest in the course, the property, the business I’ve been wanting to purchase and to wait and see if it’s really what I want.

I have permission to explore a new career and to carry more responsibility at my job.

I have permission to go to bed earlier and to linger under my blankets longer than usual.

I have permission to travel to Hawaii and to hunker down in my hometown for the next year.

I have permission to take my creativity seriously and to keep playing without any worry of where this will go.

I have permission to devote an hour every day to writing and to let go of strict routines and follow the winds of inspiration.

I have permission to meditate for fifteen minutes every morning and to consider my whole life a prayer.

I have permission to move forward on my unorthodox idea and to stick within my comfort zone until the timing feels right.

I have permission to sink and spiral into my feelings and to proceed ahead without too much processing or analyzing.

I have permission to seek clarity and answers and to bask in the sacred confusion of the unknown.

I have permission to chase my 7-figure success goal and to abandon my original plans and financial ambition for a simpler life.

I have permission to heal fast, follow the linear, programmatic steps and to wander, take the time I need, and pluck wisdom from the winding way.

I have permission to waffle back and forth, sit on the fence, and see from every angle and to walk confidently in my intuition, eyes straight ahead.

I have permission to love myself today as I am and to explore other identities and iterations of who I’m becoming.

Do you feel it?

There is power in breaking free from either/or ways of thinking and showing up in the world. These sentences aren’t two distinct people, but they describe the truth a single person can embody.

What I’ve found when I allow space for nuance and color in my life, when the lines blur, and my life looks like a smudgy watercolor painting is this: I am more at ease with the tensions and I don’t consider contradictions a sign of dreaded hypocrisy, but our delightful humanity.

Love grows freely when we permit ourselves (and others) to explore many paths other than The One.

Our wholeness isn’t a matter of being able to fit into a particular place, but to flow, however awkwardly, in and out of a variety of spaces, seasons, and circumstances.

Wholeness is surrendering to the sway, we’re always somewhere on a spectrum.

The opposites and polarization we hold within ourselves, this tugging to run in multiple directions or no direction at all, consider it your cue. It’s probably time to craft up a permission slip- to say yes to you and then pass that same wholeness on to the next person who perplexes you.

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For further encouragement:

My friend, Felicia Murrell, recently released her beautiful book into the world, I think it might be the perfect companion to continue this converation: And: The Restorative Power of Love in an Either/Or World

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