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Melli O'Brien



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Embracing Your Agency

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness.

Today, we're going to talk

about the power of embracing

your own agency and authority.

So many of us are socialized to

believe that there's a certain

path that we should follow in life.

And the expectations of the world

around us can really end up governing

and limiting all the possibilities for

how we might want to live out lives.

Sometimes those expectations

might sound like, you know, you

should get married and have kids.

Or they might sound like, if you don't

do well in school, then you're not smart

enough and you shouldn't bother trying

to start a business or advance a career.

Or maybe it sounds like, men

shouldn't be the primary caregivers

of children, that's a woman's job.

But often our own hearts are calling

us in an unconventional direction than

what the status quo expects from us.

We all share this common

challenge as human beings.

We humans are tribal creatures.

So the way our minds have evolved

means we're always going to

feel that strong pull to fit in,

be part of the pack, be liked.

So we feel drawn to conform rather than

risk any kind of rejection, but that

internal pressure to conform means that

we can sometimes deny our own feelings

and our heart's deepest desires instead

of listening to them and living them.

So it also means that we might

hold off on challenging the status

quo, even if something really

truly does not feel right for us.

Sometimes we might even go as far as to

make a decision or take action in life

with really little other reason than

the fact that everyone else is doing it.

So really a big part of the invitation

of mindfulness is to cultivate much more

self-trust and authenticity and agency.

In other words, it really helps us to

get more in touch with ourselves and

trust our own authority and our own

direct experience, rather than always

relying or defaulting back to the

opinions and experiences of others.

So it helps us, you could say, to

act from our own integrity, even

when it's challenging to do so.

So I'm curious at this point, you've

just heard me talking about this and I'm

wondering what's alive in you right now?

Like what's coming up for you as

you're hearing me talk about embracing

agency, embracing more authenticity.

Are there ways perhaps in which in

your own life you might be trying

to fit in or be liked that are not

really the true expression of what

you want and who you really are?

And if so, how can you choose to show

up as more of your true self today?

So that's the contemplation

that I'm offering here.

We can't control everything external

to us and the expectations of

our culture and our communities

can really weigh down on us.

For example, we can't deny the

realities of things like systematic

oppression or structural inequality.

And yet these kinds of expectations,

don't have to define us.

To create more positive change and

live a more authentic life we need

to embrace our own agency, challenge

the status quo and take action

guided by our own values and vision.

As always, thank you for your practice.

Thanks for being here in this community.

And inviting you now to settle

in for today's meditation.

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