Exactly one week ago today, a very rare and very magical event occurred - the "Strawberry" full moon appeared on the same day as the summer solstice. With the sun at its highest point and the moon at its lowest point, our connection with the energies that be can be quite powerful. The question, then, is which type of energy will you connect to?
Over the centuries, the June solstice has inspired countless festivals, summer celebrations and religious holidays. But this year we received the bonus of a full moon, which hits its peak on the same day. This hasn't happened in 70 years! It was a truly magical moon. I took a walk down a country road with some friends, fellow optimist wannabes like me, to look at this moon. We stood there and let the slightly pink aura of the moon cast a dreamy light on the farm before us. We had been dreaming earlier that evening, plotting to take over the world. And as we stood there it seemed possible. Anything seemed possible.
The word Solstice means sun-stopping. It's the point on the horizon where the sun appears to rise and set, and it stops and reverses direction after this day. On the solstice, the sun does not rise precisely in the east, but rises to the north of east and sets to the north of west, meaning it's visible in the sky for a longer period of time. In the Northern Hemisphere the June solstice marks the first day of summer, and is the day of the year with the most sunlight. With summer and sunlight come optimism. The feeling of new beginnings that the start of summer brings are truly unmatched by any other season or time of year.
It's that feeling that anything is possible....
A full moon possess a variety of meanings throughout the world. It is said that a full moon can influence everything from our emotional well being to our physical ailments, exacerbating symptoms and revealing hidden tendencies. This particular full moon has many names: The Strawberry Moon, The Rose Moon, The Lovers Moon. The full moon in June brings feelings of joy, free-spiritedness and sweet rewards.
It's that feeling that anything is possible...
It makes me wish that this unwavering optimism could be placed in a jar and saved for later in the year just like my strawberry preserves.
Maybe it can.
How do we take this feeling and re-create it or at least keep it going? Is the only answer to chase the summer season around the globe?
Before we start packing our bags, let’s take a closer look at what it means to have an optimistic world view. Let’s be clear- there are several things that optimism is not. Optimism is not happiness, as happiness is an indefinable and subjective emotion (see blog about Defining happiness).
Optimism is not forcing a smile, mentally chanting “cheer up buttercup,” or prancing through a field of daisies. These behaviors could be a natural side effect of experiencing optimism in your life, but they likely will not bring you a sense of inner peace in of themselves.
Optimism is hopefulness and confidence about the future or the successful outcome of something. Optimists tend to keep going, even when it seems as if the whole world is against them.
I'm consistently amazed by people who are optimistic yet have had so much hardship in their lives. When I really think about it, I realize they are also the most encouraging people in my life. I've often wondered how they stay so positive, and I've come to the conclusion that there comes a time, when faced with adversity, that people must make a decision.
They choose either:
The light. While this path is not always just flowers and full moons, it is the path where you believe there is magic in those things. There is hope.
The dark. A path of pessimism, self-doubt, self-sabotage. The place where you get stuck.
While choosing the light is choosing Optimism is definitely a choice. But choosing the dark is not the end of the story either.
Choosing THE Light
After Thomas Edison unsuccessfully tried more than 10,000 different ways to develop an electric lamp, he famously proclaimed: "I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work."
Do you want to keep that "anything is possible" feeling? While it will be another 40+ years until another Full Moon + Summer Solstice fusion, there are countless ways to start looking towards the light. For a step by step guide to get you started, see below.
What can I learn from this situation? What is the opportunity?
Learning to look for the opportunity to grow in any situation makes for an ever evolving life with limitless opportunities.
Find your tribe. Surround yourself with optimistic people.
Letting go of negativity sometimes also means letting go of negative people.Or sometimes it doesn’t have to be so dramatic (sometimes it does) …maybe you just make a conscious decision to let anything that person says float in one ear and out the other.
Be careful of the information you let into your mind.
If you study the negative, you take the negative on.If I catch myself observing a negative situation I ask myself if I can do anything to help or change the situation.If I cannot I turn off the TV or walk away.It is not healthy for anyone to merely observe.
Start your days off great!
Physical activity is always my way of boosting the positivity level…those endorphins are pretty darn amazing! Also, uplifting communication over breakfast or listening to a motivating audiobook, podcast or blog. Find inspiration in other people’s stories. I was recently inspired by Chris…check him out!