Loving The Mess That Is My Best

bless this messI’m always pathetically grateful for January, this blank slate of a month, in which I can resolve to clean up the utter mess I made of the holidays. I always mess up the holidays. Combine my logistical incompetence with the social demands of December, and you have the Hindenburg of social faux pas. I could tell you everything I did wrong last month, but then I’d end up in bed eating the Funyuns of Shame for another week, so let us not speak of it.

Suffice it to say that as 2015 begins, I’m taking stock of my life and realizing that I have messed up virtually everything I’ve ever done for over half a century. News flash: I am never going to do life right.

And yet…

By being my incompetent self, I seem to have weeded out the friends and acquaintances who can’t stand my inadequacies. Each year I’m surrounded by more kind, understanding people who seem willing to love the messes I make.

When neurosurgeon Eben Alexander went into a coma and had one whale of a near-death experience, he received three messages:  “You are loved and cherished, dearly, forever,” “You have nothing to fear,” and “There is nothing you can do wrong.”

My New Year’s resolution is first, to do my best in all situations, and second, to stand in the mess that is my best, and remember Alexander’s three messages:  Dearly loved, nothing to fear, no way to get it wrong.

Just contemplating this helps me put down the Funyuns. It makes me suspect that maybe, instead of being here to get things right, we’re here to learn to love the mess that is every human life. If that’s the one thing I get right this year, it just may be enough.

23 replies
  1. Martha Di Loreto
    Martha Di Loreto says:

    Dear Martha,

    My name is Martha, too! I am 53 years old and have only met 2 others named Martha in my life, 1 from childhood and 1 from adulthood. And now, you!

    I found you via a brief article in my local newspaper today about a woman who became a life coach through your Institute. She had read “Finding Your Own North Star” and was inspired to pursue training. I perused your website and decided to post a comment, something I never do! I thought, why not?

    i will continue to read more about you. Thank you!

    Martha Di Loreto

    Reply
    • Martha Brettschneider
      Martha Brettschneider says:

      Well this is funny, since I’m also a Martha leaving my first comment on Martha’s post, and meeting another Martha follower. Love the way the Universe brings people together!

      I, too, found Dr. Eban Alexander’s book very reassuring. After resisting so many twists and turns in my life while they were happening, I see now that there are many different paths up the mountain but they all get us to the same place. There is no “wrong” way. Just a few longer trails. Clearing the clutter out of the way makes the going a little easier. It takes a lot less energy when you’re not stepping over piles of garbage.

      Reply
      • Val
        Val says:

        Your last two sentences are one of my quotes to collect for today. Martha Beck’s style of writing and wisdom continue to light my path.

        Reply
  2. Niki
    Niki says:

    Ironic to read these words from you since these three truths are the way your posts/books have made me feel. I rarely get through one of your posts without smiling and sending love and gratitude for all your share. Good to know we are all imperfectly perfect xox.

    Reply
  3. Lisa Lindberg
    Lisa Lindberg says:

    Martha, an absolutely tremendous and timely post. Thank you. I am reminded of something I wrote down in a book of wishes that my husband and I write in each New Year’s. The book itself is not so much resolutions as intensions for the upcoming year. We pick categories each year such as Love, Money, Health, etc.; or even better the year of Influence, Philanthropy, Spirit. But I digress. About two years ago, our life was what I would consider the mess of all messes. I won’t go into detail but suffice it to say that other than our marriage, just about every other aspect of our life looked like a cyclone had hit. So in the front of the pages for the upcoming year, I copied down the lyrics of a song by Jason Mraz, A Beautiful Mess. I don’t want to get into copyright issues by typing out the lyrics here, but to summarize, it’s about loving the life messes and all. And it’s about the fact that sometimes the messes in one’s life are the most beautiful parts of it. Listen to it. I think you’ll love it. Often throughout that awful messy time, and that’s not to say that my life isn’t messy now, I went around the house belting it at the top of my lungs.

    Your words here today reminded me of that song and to cherish every aspect of life whether it be neatly organized and behaving nicely or completely out of control. Thank you.

    MB Life Coach in Training
    Lisa Lindberg

    Reply
  4. Paula
    Paula says:

    “By being my incompetent self, I seem to have weeded out the friends and acquaintances who can’t stand my inadequacies.” I think this is one of the most important signs that we are evolving into our higher selves. Negativity and perfectionism from others is so draining and exhausting and it doesn’t serve us – or them. So, I feel that, in my own life, my intolerance for people who try to tell me I’m not enough is a sign that my own self-esteem is improving. This is a very good thing. :o) Its also an opportunity to turn to that critical person (whether they be in your head or standing in front of you) that they too are enough, perfect and have nothing to fear. If they realized that they wouldn’t be critical. It can be such a vicious cycle. One of my favorite quotes is “Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor” – Anne Lamott.

    Martha, I look forward to your blogs – you are an exquisite writer. Thank you.

    Reply
  5. Rose
    Rose says:

    Oh Martha, thank you! I so needed to hear this today. Not only am I in the throws of stuffing myself with Funyuns of Shame for never seeming to get my life right, I’m angry with someone else who’s doing the same thing. Your timely article gives me compassion for both of us. Thank you for being so real and so true!

    Reply
  6. Heather
    Heather says:

    Wow! I have made some serious messes of late!!! Seriously….messy, goopy, dishevelled, and in the midst of my children, partner and well, the whole freakin world….

    And 2015 got off to the rockiest start ever with even more MESS!!!!! So I guess that just means I have more to Love??@@#$#%^***

    Well, I’ll give it a go…..and maybe I’ll love that I’m grumpy about loving my mess!!! Ha! But I’m also a fun-loving card so it’s all good!!!

    Miss Find Your Calling Martha…..I was a part of that journey and miss you……
    Perhaps I’ll hop on the Jan 20th call…..it looks like fun and I could sure use Something New

    With love….

    Reply
  7. Zena
    Zena says:

    As always, your message is so “activating”!
    I won’t repeat what others have so eloquently written, but add that the knowledge that we are not alone in our “mess” obliterates the isolation that us mess makers can feel (and makes us run for the Funions)!
    Thank you!

    Reply
  8. CI
    CI says:

    Hello Martha I did not know you, talk about your book on my blog badly written as I am French mother tongue. Thank you to exist. Wish to com soon for a session.

    Reply
  9. Arwen
    Arwen says:

    Whenever I feel stuck or discouraged, I read Martha’s blog, and she always ALWAYS has exactly the right message for me. I was awake at 5:00 this morning running filmstrips of my inadequacies and failures through my brain. After reading this short piece, I feel encouraged to see my “failures” as steps along the path, weeding out things I don’t need in my life. Bless you Martha!

    Reply
  10. CI
    CI says:

    I read again this article today.

    Some people are in the darkness and can do wrong however. I was engaged to a bad person, I think he did nearly every thing very wrong as when you intentionnally hurt someone, you do wrong. He is a dangerous man and it is very wrong. He is certainly selling women to pass them to Irak, it is very wrong. He broke my computer in 2 and threatened me to be deported to Irak, it was very wrong.

    I am trying to do something about all this but it seems to me everybody around is very wrong too.

    For this my month of December was very bad and January as well.

    I was sad a few days ago as I noticed that the Barbie and Ken serial killers of women in Canada, went out of jails in 2005, it seemed so wrong to me. How can you kill so many women and get out of jail?
    To serve the darkness is wrong, will always be wrong.

    But you brought me so much with your book at the end of December, that this thread made me smile. I am sure Martha Beck did not do a lot of things wrong or at least more better thing than wrong things.

    But people do wrong sometimes, and it is important to think about all the things we did wrong last year to not do it again.

    Today it was the anniversary of holocaust, it was wrong.

    So many things on earth are deeply wrong.

    For me, when you serve the darkness you are wrong.

    I can see when people do black magic just at looking at their photos sometimes, and I see many details just at looking around them, at the energy, I see images, and their soul talk to me.

    I could never find the darkness doing right.

    Reply
  11. Carmen
    Carmen says:

    When my daugher was growing up I used to tell her and I still do; everything you do is good and right and correct. She loved it and still do. I also tell that to my husband and to me because it is within our own circumstances that something is right, although I can not believe evil is right. Thanks Martha!

    Reply
  12. Fran Bennett
    Fran Bennett says:

    Thanks again for your fun loving wisdom Martha. Your wonderful humor allows your wisdom to enter so easily and with a smile. I’ve found that when I accept the “mess that is my best” and forgive my own shortcomings, loving and forgiving “the mess that is all human life” is almost automatic and far less onerous than worrying, judging and agitating. Helps me to keep my own side of the street clean, be willing to accept help when I need it, and offer help where I can. Thank you again wonderful woman!!!

    Reply
  13. T
    T says:

    Dearest Martha,
    I don’t know if you read this replys or you don’t, but if you do, I would like for you unriddle something for me. I also read Eben Alexander’s book and pretty much evrything you write. If you squiggle something on a paper napking I would read it. Having said all that, I would love for you to write something, some day that helps my buy into “There is nothing you can do wrong.”….. 18 years ago I chose to have 3 abortions and to this day, I can’t right that wrong…can you unriddle that one for me?

    xo
    T

    Reply
  14. Kelly
    Kelly says:

    So… sent this inspiration to my girlfriend because we were just discussing weeding out the negative people in our lives…the crazy thing is that I somehow…and I have no idea how…. managed to send it to another girlfriend of mine who just happened to lose her only son two months ago to a tragic accident….I am sure she was completely confused by my sending it to her…the crazy thing is that when I clicked on “read more” I read the part about Eben Alexander…and BA-BING!!! I was telling my girlfriend who lost her son about Eben’s book in the hopes that she would gain some comfort and peace from reading it….so I really hope she clicked on “read more” too and reads about Eben Alexander….Wow!!

    Reply
  15. Ci
    Ci says:

    I was referring to this

    When neurosurgeon Eben Alexander went into a coma and had one whale of a near-death experience, he received three messages: “You are loved and cherished, dearly, forever,” “You have nothing to fear,” and “There is nothing you can do wrong.”

    I think there is a lof of things we can do wrong. Even if on the other side, it does not seem to have judgements, and only pure love and joy, I agree with this, and when I had a coronal chakra awakening means really the feeling to have wind on my brain, and the blue pearl, etc etc, I felt the same, that every thing was fine, that there was no mistake, that we were where we had to be.
    Means maybe the darkness has to be experienced.

    Butwhere I am today, I feel that I can do wrong, others can do wrong.

    Because I am back on this frequencies. I do not like the idea of a child abuser, or of a serial killer to think that he cannot do wrong.

    That is the point. Self criticism seems important to me.

    And I am sure that even Martha Beck can have hurt some people, can have done wrong on some aspects, because we can all be wrong and do wrong, it is our human condition. Maybe we have to experienced it and that is why we cannot do wrong.

    Reply

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] “When neurosurgeon Eben Alexander went into a coma and had one whale of a near-death experience, he received three messages:  “You are loved and cherished, dearly, forever,” “You have nothing to fear,” and “There is nothing you can do wrong.” – Martha Beck from her blog here. […]

  2. […] Martha Beck writes that she’ll never get life right, that maybe botching things has driven the grumps out of her life.”By being my incompetent self, I seem to have weeded out the friends and acquaintances who can’t stand my inadequacies. Each year I’m surrounded by more kind, understanding people who seem willing to love the messes I make.” She later says, “Maybe, instead of being here to get things right, we’re here to learn to love the mess that is every human life. If that’s the one thing I get right this year, it just may be enough.” […]

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