What is fulfillment? The dictionary defines it as satisfaction or happiness as the result of fully developing one’s abilities or character. Who doesn’t want to exit this life fulfilled? How do you tap into the essence of your own character? How does one take responsibility for their life and health and happiness?

It’s a matter of acting from inspiration instead of obligation. How do you distinguish the motivation behind your actions? Are you acting from inspiration of your own character or because you feel obligated to do what someone else thinks you should do? Here is a quick test. The feeling of relief accompanies inspiration and is not available when a decision is made out of obligation.

Some say it takes a process of emptying oneself of expectation to be open to inspiration. There has been much written on living in the now and the value of being present to each moment. But how do you achieve that?

Americans have been in search of less struggle and stress in our lives. We have tried desperately to avoid pain and suffering. Maybe, just maybe, if we stop running from pain and stop to feel it, acknowledge it, allow the pain to sweep through us, we will be able to move through it to the other side where possibility is found. Haven’t we all heard that anything we resist persists?

Look around at the healthy people in your lives, especially the elders that have a long history of good health and quick recovery of set backs of good health. They acknowledge illness, fight it, recover and move on. They don’t linger in what if or what was. They embrace what is and what’s next with possibility and hope. Maybe that can only be accomplished by dropping expectation and resistance to what is.

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