From Worry to Presence

February 27, 2024

From Worry to Presence

By Amba Gale

Have you ever woken up in the early, early morning hours, thinking, in your head, subsumed by something bothering you?

Well, I did, on this not-to-be-missed gorgeous morning, and while I told you in my last Blog you wouldn’t be hearing from me until March, this moment was so startling, so awesome, and it’s so timely to write to you about it, now. So, I am doing just that!

The date was February 17, four weeks before my first posting was to be launched on Substack, what will be my new blog platform.

I am excited about it as a new home for my writing, a new home for making an even greater contribution through this medium, and for being heard by others who have not yet heard my voice or what I offer through my writing and the other media of expression, like courses, live work, online work, perhaps coming videos, podcasts, etc.

And while I am excited, I am, frankly, and truth be told, also scared. Stepping into the unknown and taking the risk to fly in new lands is always uncomfortable.

I love contributing to you and to the people who are subscribers here.

Some have worked with me deeply in my transformational work. Some are family. Some are dear friends from long ago and more recent times. All are curious, open, and welcoming, interested in, or hungry to develop themselves, out to serve, out to live life wakefully, to move through this life as pilgrims, as Mark Nepo says, poet and teacher that he is, in The Book of Awakening.

In one if his morning readings, he speaks:

“To journey without being changed
is to be a nomad.
To change without journeying
is to be a chameleon.
To journey and to be transformed by the journey
Is to be a pilgrim.”

This quote is what is behind my calling us “pilgrims.”

While I have hired a fabulous coach to support me in onboarding myself onto this new platform, I am, frankly, intimidated by what seems to be both the richness and the complexity of Substack. Technical expertise, as some of you know, even on a learning curve – is, to say the least, not my “sweet spot.” And I have hired another coach, an award-winning author, to guide me through navigating Substack on behalf of making the largest contribution through that platform that I can.

Nevertheless, I am plagued with questions as I move forward:

Will my current subscribers (you) like, or even love, the new platform?

What is calling to be the very first blog post, a post that reaches the listening ear of both people who know me well and those who don’t?

Will some of my subscribers be interested in joining a community conversation around my main themes for crossing thresholds, living wakefully, and leading from the heart of leadership and the joy that comes from being?

Sometimes, our mind just clicks in and goes wild. 

Sometimes, the worries grab us and engulf us and we are all too asleep to notice them as worries in our heads that don’t need to mess with us with their sticky fingers.

My own mind goes to the “worst-case scenario” very easily. You might already know that about me.

It’s one thing to know that the key to equanimity is awareness, making the shift from thinking to being present, and another thing to actually make that shift in real time.

So, here I am, at dawn, walking down in the almost total dark to the middle landing of our house to get something to write on, looking down, watching the stairs, and then, when landing on the maple flooring of the middle floor, I look up.

And there she was. That amazing sky.

What a wake-up call!

The slow orange, crimson, red, and yellow sunrise startled me awake as it changed shapes and color, all reflected in the vast red sea before me and brought me present to the world and to myself. It took me out of my worried mind and onto the stage called Presence.

Then the first words of a poem to the sun came to me.

Without yet turning the lights on in our family room, I found my way to the poetry chair that I sit in each morning, and in that rising fairy light of early morning, I lit my candles, lifted my pen, and wrote those first few words down, and the rest of the poem flowed out.

play sunrise video

Additional Posts

February 13, 2024

My Daughter, My Teacher

Four Sundays ago, I came to my office early, before my family was awake.  Seeing my desk cluttered with papers, I passed right by the meditation corner where, every morning, I meditate, write poetry, or frequently read Mark Nepo’s Book of Awakening before tackling anything. I saw all the papers on the desk just begging to be sorted into notes that, if touched one by one and placed on a calendar, or a list, or committed to, would provide me with clear openings for action for my life.  Since having gone to Indonesia for the month of November and having…

January 30, 2024

The Perfect Storm

Sometimes we get what we want, and sometimes we don’t. Sometimes, I like to look at it like this: no matter what life serves us, it is always what we need. Eckart Tolle, one of my favorite teachers/authors, puts it like this: “Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness.  How do you know this is the experience you need? Because this is the experience you are having at the moment.” When last week started, I had many plans. I had a humongous list of what was to be done and to be…

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