Summer is my season and I love it. But I must confess my mind has been in a bit of an auto-pilot/don’t want to deal/ vacation mode. And after indulging in a few weeks of avoidance therapy, I’ve been feeling a bit stuck. Not terrible, just sluggish. Rather than digging in and figuring things out, journaling, meditating, eating clean and exercising no matter how tired I am…I gave in to my summer escapism vibes. July was filled with beach outings, going out to dinner and burying my nose in a book – actually many, many books.
Most of us know our cycles – for me, feeling stressed at work, leads to not enough hours in the day, skipping a workout opting instead to meet girlfriends for wine, which leads to a lackluster night’s sleep and hitting the snooze button. Hitting the snooze button means skipping meditation and breakfast opting instead for to-go coffee as I race off to work. Go ahead and repeat this 5 days a week and by the time the weekend rolls around I’m toast. I want quiet time and fiction. Oh and I tend to look at my phone more too. Instagram becomes my drug of choice.
The bi-product of this cycle is comparison. As I feel more run down, I look at others and compare my life to lovely beach girls who seem remarkably stress free and sparkly. It’s a slippery slope because who doesn’t want to look at a gorgeous girl driving her cute Kombi around Australia sipping wine on a picnic blanket w/perfect beachy waves and long flowy dresses. Or another girl who preps the most amazing dragonfruit acai bowls and stays perfectly hydrated by sipping from a fresh young coconut on a daily basis. Oh yea, or my favorite beer drinking, pizza eating blonde w/an arsenal of bikinis, an awesome bod, fresh highlights and a wicked sense of humor. It’s my girl porn. But then I have to stop. And give myself a gentle talking too.
I say something like, “Hey love. It does no good to look at someone else because you cannot truly know them. They are probably amazing, warm and wonderful, but they aren’t you. They are here to complete their journey just like you are here to complete yours. So there is truly no point looking at someone else I thinking I wish…“
I wish I looked like that, I wish I had that idea first, why didn’t I think to do that. Why am I stressed again? How did I get here again? I bet she doesn’t feel this way…over-eat, feel hungover, let people get to her, judge others, loses her temper, acts unfeminine, was bitchy to her co-worker. Sound familiar?
We are smart. We know social media isn’t real, but wow, even knowing it doesn’t mean you don’t get sucked in. And the ‘if only’s’ come rolling in right after.
But I know it’s not about that. I am here to follow my bliss. And that is not that girl’s bliss. It is okay to look to her for ideas and inspiration. But if it’s affecting me more negatively than positively, then it’s time to unplug.
That’s when it’s time for the pep talk. And going back to what works for me. To get clarity, to gain perspective. Today, I did my meditation followed by ten minutes of automatic writing. And here’s what came up. And whether this was my mind or a divine message, I cannot say. But it is absolutely truth for me and something I will probably re-read to keep at the forefront of my practice in August.
Don’t give up. Keep after it. Write, take pictures, listen to cool music, and it’s okay to look to others for inspiration and ideas. It’s where we all get inspired. But do your best to stop short of comparison. Discipline your mind to think, that is a great idea or I haven’t tried that technique before, I am going to give it a shot and then leave it at that. Get inspired and be happy for others who have beautiful ideas and who are creating beauty out in the world because it lifts us all up. It spreads happiness. When you are happy and in a good place it positively impacts everyone around you. So do those things and find those things that light you up.
You have great things to tell the world. And those things can be big or small. Your destiny on any given day will change. One day it can be as simple as smiling at someone when you walk by. Who knows what that person was dealing with on that day and how important that single moment of friendliness was to that person. Other days it can be a huge action like taking a bold step and quitting a habit you know isn’t serving you or deciding to surrender a relationship that simply isn’t nourishing your soul any longer. Every day is different.
It got me back to myself. And the re-commitment to clear time every morning to ground and center before I start my day. Instead of hitting snooze, I resolve to allocate 20 minutes to a guided meditation. I started today and I’m going to see where it takes me. I will see if I can invest that time in myself. And maybe that means I can show up and be accepting of myself because there will be days when I am a zen master and there will be days where I literally think I’m going to go crazy because the itch on my nose is SO bad. And when in doubt, I write. And I try not to judge the writing. And if I can’t stop feeling less than because of my silly instagram feed than I may need to take some additional measures and digitally unplug for a bit.
I read a blog post by a girl I admired and she was using the Deepak Chopra/Oprah 21 day guided meditation app. I’ve mixed and matched meditations, but crazy enough, I have never tried this one. So I used it today. And it is very soothing and quite simply, a lovely way to spend 20 minutes. You can find it here if you’re interested.
So anyone reading this…thanks for reading it. And thanks for being someone doing their best out in the world today. Thanks for taking your own unique perspective on the world and showing up. And if it didn’t go so great today, that is a-ok. You and I will both try again tomorrow. And we will do our best and that will be enough. And it will be perfectly imperfect.
Much love and here’s to amazing August!