We all have a “this” we want to get beyond. We yearn for the freedom of release from the heaviness of whatever our “this” is. Sometimes in that yearning, we adopt coping behaviors to minimize the discomfort – like ordering that second (or third) cocktail, eating second (or third) helpings, forgoing a trip to the gym or a walk in favor of errand running. You get the idea.
What I share next may surprise a few of you. Though I have the Positivity Strength in my top five of Gallup’s Strengths Finder, and I’m known as a Pollyanna type, filled with optimism since I can remember, I have plenty of “this” I yearn to get beyond. I yearn to feel like I have the patience to re-embrace my artistic and creative expression outlets. I wish Hurricane Harvey had not stolen so much of my family’s life-force energy via time and energy output in the aftermath. I’m ready to not feel tired. And, I have adopted a few of those coping behaviors I’m ready to halt.
I’m bringing this up today because as a coach, I have the privilege of having deep, honest and profound conversations with my clients, which allows me to see trends and universal truths. This lets me know I’m not the only one experiencing a kind of tug-of-war between what is lovely and light-filled and what is heartbreaking and grief-inducing in my life. Add to our personal list of “this” the uncertainty and dysfunction of global affairs, and it is no wonder our collective health, sleep and waistlines are affected. (Thank you to all my clients for your brave honesty – and yes, I do let them know when I see the trends so they don’t think they are the odd one out.)
I have three tried and true strategies to share that support us to acknowledge our “this” while tending to our hearts and self-care. And honestly, these are the ways I return to my optimism and positivity.
- Journal out the feelings – whether that is by writing inside a beautifully bound book with sumptuous feeling pages or “journaling out loud” our feelings with a trusted coach, mentor or best friend, we need to release those words and not keep them bottled up inside.
- Mindfulness – whether that is sitting quietly and meditating (with an app or on your own), or simply taking a moment before you get out of bed or fall asleep to check in with the sensations in your body. Awareness of your mind/body/spirit is the key. Answering the following questions is a great way to begin: one word for my mind is (fill in the blank), my body is (fill in the blank), my spirit is (fill in the blank) and my heart is (fill in the blank). After a week of doing this, you will notice patterns and know what direction to move in with your self-care.
- Movement – whether that is physical exercise like walking/running, lifting weights, yoga or dance, our body can help release some of that pent up emotion and yearning around that darn “this” we long to move beyond. I am a big fan of turning on some music and free form dancing around my living room. Sometimes I turn on old school rock or disco, other times new-age music or chants depending on my mood.
And, here’s the thing – these strategies do not eliminate the “this” that drags at your heart. They will, however, help you take care of you while time and consciousness heal your grief. I always feel better when I am a pro-active partner in handling my “this” life stuff.
Your turn – how do you take care of you while yearning to be beyond a “this” in life?
If you have a “this” that is lingering, coaching with me can support you to heal and find your way forward, removing the stranglehold of the “When am I going to get over this?” shame and blame. You are not alone.
Love & Light,