As you know Rotary International President Gordon McInally has inspired us to think about Creating Hope in the World and we can do so by ensuring we are practicing caring for ourselves and others this Rotary year. 
Each month, we are sharing a mental health moment to inspire you on how you can practice caring for yourself and others.  This month, we are exploring the concept of Wholehearted Living.

Wholehearted Living

Rotarians are People of Action. We get things done and make a difference across the globe and in our communities.  This indeed is one of the best things that leads to wholehearted living. However, we sometimes forget other aspects that can make us more wholehearted – as in living and loving with your whole heart.
Brené Brown is a researcher, professor and author who is known for her work on shame, vulnerability, and leadership. In Brené’s research, she uncovered the skills that lead to people living their best life despite risk and uncertainty.  As part of those collection of skills, she crafted the ten “guideposts” for Wholehearted Living.
The guideposts for Wholehearted Living are:
  1. Cultivating Authenticity and Letting Go of What Other People Think
Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of what we think we are supposed to be and embracing who we are.
  1. Cultivating Self-Compassion and Letting Go of Perfectionism
If you can’t give compassion to yourself, you won’t be able to give it to others.
  1. Cultivating Your Resilient Spirit, Letting Go of Numbing and Powerlessness
Resilience is the ability to overcome adversity and bounce back from losses, errors, and setbacks.
  1. Cultivating Gratitude and Joy, Letting go of Scarcity and Fear of the Dark
“Foreboding Joy” is the fear that the other shoe is going to drop when good things happen to us  in life.
  1. Cultivating Intuition and Trusting Faith, Letting Go of the Need for Certainty
Intuition is not a single way of knowing, its our ability to hold space for uncertainty and our willingness to trust ourselves.
  1. Cultivating Creativity and Letting Go of Comparison
There is no such thing as a creative person and a non-creative person. There are only people who practice creativity and those who don’t.
  1. Cultivating Play and Rest, Letting Go of Exhaustion as a Status Symbol and Productivity as Self-Worth
Play is not a luxury; it is a necessity for us to operate in the fullness of our potential. The more play disappears from your life, the closer you move towards a state of depression.
  1. Cultivating Calm and Stillness and Letting Go of Anxiety as a Lifestyle
We must create space in our life to sit in calm and stillness.  This is the time for emotional processing and self-regulation. We need this time to feel what’s going on in our life and dream and explore the possibilities.
  1. Cultivating Meaningful Work, Letting Go of Self-Doubt and Supposed-To
Don’t ask what the world needs, ask what makes you come alive, and go do it because the world needs people who have come alive.
  1. Cultivating Laughter, Song, and Dance. And Letting Go of Cool and Always in Control
When we value being cool and in control over granting ourselves the freedom to unleash the passionate, goofy, and soulful expressions of who we are, we betray ourselves.
Take a moment to think about these guideposts.  Which guidepost are you doing best with? Be sure to celebrate it!  What guidepost --if given more attention-- would make the biggest difference for you? The idea is that throughout our lives, we must cultivate these skills and practice them. These “guideposts” are not to be just completed or considered a destination, but to be viewed as a way of travel.
As Brené Says, “Wholeheartedness is like a North Star. You can never get there but you can know when you’re heading the right way.” 
Best wishes to wholehearted living for all of our Rotarians in District 5150. 

Support Mental Health & Wellness

District 5150 has taken a pledge to focus on mental health and has a group of committed Rotarians working towards making a difference in the arena of mental health here in our own district.  We are working towards creating a District 5150 Rotarian Action Group and need your help. If you are interested in being a part of the discussion and solution, please join us. Our next meeting is August 15, 2023
About the author:  Jenny Bates is a proud Rotarian in District 5150 and is the wife of the District Governor Laine Hendricks. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and owner of Waves of Change Recovery Services.  View our other Mental Health Matters blog posts.