|Creative Development for Artists, Writers and all Artistic Creativity|
It’s 7:50 am on a Tuesday morning and I’ve just received a tiny, unexpected gift from nature involving a couple of spiders and an intricate dance of life and death.
I’ve been mulling over a post about the power of small gifts for a few days now, without it quite coming together. How wonderful then, that a gift from out of the blue helped it gel.
It helped me see 3 clear categories of small gift that – providing you are open to them can inspire your creativity, sprinkle joy and awe around your daily life, enhance your personal effectiveness – and finally, think more positively of yourself and others.
Now that’s not a bad haul.
Let me stress again though – you have to be open to it. You have to be ready to recognise the gifts and gratefully receive their benefits.
Here are the ‘gift categories’ that those two spiders have helped me to see.
- Gifts from the universe
- Gifts from, or to, others
- Gifts to yourself
I’ll cover the final pair in later posts.
Gifts from the Universe
One way or another, these are gifts for your soul.
They give the same kind of jaw dropping hit you might get from a close encounter with a blue whale, or from time in the Himalayas, or from a solar eclipse. But the difference is that where you generally have to seek out such events – these smaller gifts from the universe seem instead to seek out you.
These fleeting moments may literally be from the universe – a star twinkling in a way that takes your attention, an unusual halo around the moon or the briefest, silent streak of a shooting star. They can be common-place events like sunsets, birdsongs and rainbows (even in England, where rainbows are common, can anyone ever take their stunning beauty for granted?)
And you can also find them very close to home – very much in your own back yard.
Spiders and Wasps
Take care not to miss them. Take the time you need to enjoy them. Whatever else you are doing can usually wait for a couple of minutes, can’t it?
Here in Britain it’s been a very poor summer. August was wet and depressing. In fact August 2008 had the least sunshine since records began. Because my wife, Lynda, is still recovering from her recent health challenges we’ve rarely journeyed far from home.
Luckily gifts from the universe happen everywhere – and wherever you happen to be right now is no exception.
It’s the less obvious gifts that can bring light to your life most powerfully. This dark summer has been peppered with such gifts for me, and by far the most memorable have been within metres of my home. Hey – two of these gifts came while I was putting out the rubbish!
Bizarrely, spiders and wasps have been to the fore. I should mention that British spiders are entirely harmless and not to be feared.
The first of these gifts came on hearing the urgent buzzing of a fly being subdued by a spider half its size. As I watched, a passing wasp also noticed the commotion. It landed on the fly, fought off the spider, stung its new possession to death and then flew off with it, dragging bits of web in its wake. Now that’s drama.
The second was observing a wasp hunting for hoverflies on the flower heads of a fennel plant.
Then there was the spotting and capturing of a mother wolf spider, complete with dozens of her babies on her back. I was able to share that with my young grandson before returning mother and family unharmed.
And just now, as I was about to wheel out our recycling bin for collection I was gifted with the sight of two garden spiders hanging from the bin in a dance of love and death. I watched from only a few centimetres away as the tiny male carefully tickled and coaxed the female into subdued readiness for their briefest of encounters. But when he made his move she pounced. Instead of being her lover he became her breakfast.
Gifts for All Tastes
Now I concede that this particular kind of gift might not be your cup of tea. Fair enough – but do remember that I wasn’t looking for these gifts – they found me. I was simply open to recognising and receiving them.
Luckily for anyone not so enthralled by creepy-crawlies, the world is full of variety. The universe offers gifts to suit all tastes. They are all around you if only you are open to receiving them.
I can’t fully explain the power of these small events. They are life affirming. If you have a faith then they are faith affirming. If like me you are not religious they still offer moments of deep spiritual connection – along with the chance to lose yourself for a short while in the intricate beauty of nature.
And when they happen and you accept them as the wonderful gifts they are then even non-religious types like me feel – dare I say it – blessed – or at least very, very lucky.
The Power of Gratitude
It’s not just the gift, it’s how you receive it. Recognising your luck is crucial. Feeling grateful is essential. These are powerful positive feelings to bring into your life. They make you feel better about your world and about yourself. They help you maintain or introduce beneficial good emotions. And they can spur you to inspiration and creativity.
If your thoughts are dark they give you a chink of light. If you’re already bathed in sunshine they make you feel even better.
So there it is.
- Have your senses open and your awareness at the ready. Don’t let these gifts slip by unnoticed.
- Be willing to accept the gift for what it is. There are no strings, no catches, just a fleeting offering from a generous universe.
- Take time out. Lose yourself to the moment. Appreciate. Connect.
- Be generous yourself in your gratitude to the universe. Share the gift if you can. And be fully aware of your positive emotions.
Gifts from the universe are there for every single one of us. Accept them as often as you can.
Please add a comment and share your own favourite gifts from the universe. I’d appreciate it very much.
If you enjoyed this article please vote for it on Stumbleupon by clicking the button below. Thank you.