Health

I Surrender!

Some days I just don’t give a damn.

I’m tired. I’ve battled the demons of the day job, the emotional toll of being a caregiver, the chores of home ownership, and I’ve wrangled words on paper and by the end of the week I’m done. Today is one of those days. I’m pissed off that last night’s storm knocked more deadfall to the ground. I just can’t face the puddles of rainwater in my basement. I don’t care if mold will grow in the corners. And don’t get me started on the piles of laundry and dishes and dust and. . ..

Do your lists of things to do grow at an alarming rate? Mine do. And it is exhausting. So what do you do? I don’t know about you but there are days when I give up. I surrender to the weight of ALL THE THINGS and I throw myself down on the floor, kicking and screaming “I don’t wanna!” (Okay, not literally, but it’s how I feel.)

IT’S NOT LAZINESS

I used to berate myself when I did this. I was lazy. I was a cry-baby. I was inadequate to the job of adulting. What a load of $#!%.

Life can be hard. Life can, and often does, pull the unexpected surprise. And some of us pile on more SHOULDS than is humanly possible. I’m particularly bad at that. I’d go and go and go until I was so exhausted and overwhelmed that I’d collapse. Slowly, I’ve learned that when I reach the “Waa, I don’t wanna” stage, I’ve been pushing myself too hard. It’s time for a break.

TAKE A BREAK

Taking a break doesn’t need to mean taking a whole day off. Sometimes taking the whole day would mean wrecking other plans or interfering with deadlines I cannot ignore. Taking a break means be kind to yourself. Reward yourself. When time is precious I’ll indulge in a special snack or beverage. Reserve these foods and drinks as special, otherwise it won’t feel like a treat.

tLatte, take a break, Lynette M Burrows, Morten Rand-Hendriksen Flickr CC

 

Willing to spend twenty minutes or more? Take a bubble bath. Go for a walk in a place that feeds your soul. Gaze at the stars. Take a nap.

Need a longer break? Read a book (best, re-read an old favorite!) Visit a museum. Go to a concert or a movie. And at least once a year, turn off, tune out, and take a week or more to explore people and places.

UNDERSTAND

Understand why your body, your soul needs a break. Understand that this, too, is part of life. It’s not something you need to forgive. You’ve done nothing wrong. You’re re-energizing, getting yourself ready for the next wave.

If you find yourself taking an extended break or too many breaks, examine your why. Perhaps the thing you are avoiding is a thing you don’t need to do. Perhaps you’ve been too long without a break. Perhaps you are fighting resistance for other reasons. Once you understand why,

you’ll be able to move forward, to jump back in.

JUMP BACK IN

The key to making this reward system work is to jump back on the tracks after your break is over. And next time, don’t wait so long between breaks. It will make doing ALL THE THINGS so much easier.

I’ve finished my latte, so it’s back to the soggy basement for me. What do you do to reward yourself, to take a break, when you’re doing too much?

Don’t Wait for the Storm to Pass

We all have challenges in life whether it is just getting through a bad day or getting through months of illness or a lifetime of grief. Our mission is to learn to dance in the rain. But dance in the rain doesn’t necessarily mean to literally dance.

In KM Huber’s blog, Aim for Even, she talks about how we humans try to stay in one moment even though that is impossible to do. Her dance in the rain is to be present.

Marie Forleo gives advice on how to Find the Courage to Keep Going When You Feel Like Giving Up in this short video.

How can you learn to dance in the rain? Find that one thing you love and give yourself a few minutes just connecting to that thing you love. For me, if I spend a few minutes writing each day I’ve just danced in the rain. Another way I dance is to listen to beautiful music from one of my favorite groups, like Pentatonix.

So if your life is a storm that takes your breath away, take a moment for yourself. If you’ve used that moment reading this blog I can only say I am honored. If you share something of how you dance in the rain in the comments below, I am blessed. Thank you.

Image courtesy of Heather on Flickr Creative Commons

 

 

Do You Need a Break?

Photo of man & boy planning grocery listIs your summer as busy as your fall and winter? Are you scurrying around running the kids to one event or another? Or maybe you’re frantically preparing for visiting family members, or going to visit family, or going on vacation. Do you need a vacation from your vacation?

I’m here to remind you to take some restorative time. A break. It doesn’t have to last a long time. What it must be is something that gives you a lift.

Music does it for me. Doesn’t matter what my mood was before the music starts, music well-played, will carry me away. It speaks to the me tucked away inside. It lifts me up, stirs my feet, brings a tear, and fills my heart.

Treble cleft and notes

Apparently the expressiveness of music is nearly universal. Why does music make us feel emotional? According to this article in the Scientific American it isn’t really music that makes us feel. It’s other humans. Yup. You, me, him, her. The expressiveness of a human being, something you’ve felt yourself or seen expressed by someone else. Wait. Music isn’t human, you say. No, but music is something that can be manipulated to be expressive, humanly expressive, and that tickles a memory, a feeling.

Music doesn’t do it for everyone. For some it’s the sound of a well-tuned engine racing down the track. Others are swept away by the beauty of Monet or van Go gh or Picasso. A passage in a book can stir one’s emotions or evoke an image that moves us. No matter if it’s the notes of a bullfrog, the trill of a nightingale, the sweeping vistas of a prairie, or the majesty of mountains, it’s reaching the most human place inside you.

As I said, music does it for me. I’d like to share all my favorites with you, but that would take hours and hours and hours. Instead, let me share just one today. Take a listen.

<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/Edwsf-8F3sI?rel=0&amp;controls=0&amp;showinfo=0″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

If the link to the video doesn’t work, try this link.

There’s a place, a sound, where you find joy and solace and restoration.Where do you find a moment for yourself? Won’t you share? Please only post one link per comment so the bot doesn’t put your comment in the spam box. And thank you for taking time to read and comment.

 

 

SuMan and son planning grocery list image via configmanager on Flickr
Musical Notes Image via Clipart Panda

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave