It has been a mad busy month – vacation, a pending move (finally happening this week yay!!) and hours of planning for my beloved father’s birthday. I am so grateful for all of these wonderful happenings in my life but also kind of exhausted. My mind seems to match the erratic positioning of the half-packed boxes in my little apartment. There's a slight undercurrent of anxiety and even as I type out this plain and simple truth, I find myself on trial with self-judgement. “There are NO excuses in life. Pull it together, there is no room for FALTERING. You are so lucky to have any of this, if you want it you’ll push through, power through, and deliver….and it better be a damn good job”. And the usual soundtrack plays on, words dripping heavily. Geeze, this harsh type of motivation is a whole different kind of exhausting. Why do we need to be so hard on ourselves? As I ponder this question the saving grace of all my lessons come flooding back to me. The answer is that you simply don't. My logic mind rejects this idea but I've now developed a new voice that gently says "It's okay to rest". If it's one thing that I've learned through my study of yoga and interviews with so many amazing souls, it's that all of this is a journey to the heart. As the brilliant Rumi puts it
"Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it."
It's easy to continue with the familiar obligation to power through. It's so much harder to stop in the midst of a tornado and find stillness despite the anxiety. When life demands become overwhelming it's instinctive to descend into the spiral and try to get everything under control. The only trouble with that is "control" is an illusion and the calculated descent quickly turns into a hard tumble. I'm not going to lie, there's a part of me that totally rejects what I just said. It prefers to maintain my old patterns. It desperately wants to make life look effortlessly perfect (whatever that means). But I've been down that path before. Many times. Self-care falls by the wayside, self-judgement becomes king, and the true self closes. Another thing that I've learned is that "effortless" is achievable but doesn't look the way you expect it to. It looks different depending on who you are but it holds the same lightness. In essence, it's that glow that you see in people who live mostly in joy; and people who live in joy don't speak harsh words against themselves. That's what I really, truly want. This is a journey to the heart. So there. I will work against the nagging feeling to follow my old habits of continuing to produce even though I feel like a tired zombie. I will tolerate the thought that if I choose to rest, my world will most probably crumble into a disastrous scenario so bad that I haven't even thought of yet. And I will take on the challenge to rest hard because I feel a sense of relief just saying this, albeit a bit anxious. To take a lesson from another brilliant mind
"I have so much to accomplish today so I need to meditate for two hours instead of one". Ghandi
I'm willing to take a bet that I'm not the only one who has had a crazy few weeks. That's why for this week, I've written this blog post plus I put together a ten minute meditation. If you're on the same boat, let's breathe together, reset and re-calibrate.