Reconnecting with what brings you joy !
I did get back on my bike and for the first time ever I went for a ride in the snow. I started out very cautiously and gradually worked up to being able to ride the routes I took pre-COVID. The difference is, that I have learned to pace myself. If I don’t feel up to the physical challenge of a certain activity, I give myself permission to take a break and rest. It’s ok to sit on the couch and read cookbooks, search decor ideas on Pinterest while listening to Christmas music. If it makes you feel good in the moment, do it and don’t feel guilty about it! Guilt is a useless feeling, reserved for when you’ve done something terribly wrong – like forgetting to close the sunroof on your car. This usually wouldn’t be a big deal unless of course there is torrential rainfall during the night. You discover what you’ve done and sneak out in the early morning hours, towel in hand to mop up the evidence before anyone wakes. You choose not to confess to your husband when he remarks months later that the seats don’t heat up as well as they used to.
One of my biggest discoveries is that if we are constantly doing and don’t take time to “be” then we’re missing out on so much of what life has to offer.
My thoughts on being vs doing
Self care is of course lovely. I am fortunate enough to be able to go for a pedicure once a month at my good friend Kate’s place and love to cook, decorate my house and indulge in magazines and good music. These things bring me joy at a certain level!
Life cannot, however, just be about this type of self care. I think we need to dig deeper.
Over the years, I have watched a shift in society. The focus has become more towards looking out for ourselves…trips to the spa; travelling; cruise ships; paddle boarding; buying expensive bikes; working out and posting photo after photo on Facebook sharing with the world how great our lives are. We are conditioned to “do”. What happens if things change and we can no longer “do”? Without the ability to just “be”, we are left with feelings of dissatisfaction, and unhappiness that can lead to aggression and depression.
I am living proof that anyone can learn to “be”. These past months, I have stopped to smell the coffee. I have a greater appreciation for my surroundings and all of the beautiful people I have in my life. Meditation is part of my daily ritual and I really have learned how to turn off the hamster, allowing myself to disconnect from my thoughts and focus on my breath. The more I do it the easier it gets. Now, I love to sit and watch my birds and have absolutely no problem letting Sergio take over in the kitchen. Heck he even offered to cook the turkey this year and I’ve agreed to let him do it!
Gradually, I am becoming less anxious and more accepting of what is. My appreciation for life balance and wellness has become a focal point. It’s not that I spend all of my time being, I simply have a better understanding of how important it is to give yourself permission to dedicate some time towards this.
My sense of purpose has been restored and living more in the moment brings me joy.
I do believe that we all have something to contribute to the greater good and if we take a moment to really think about it, it becomes more clear.
Love, compassion, kindness and presence is meant to be shared…
I highly recommend it!