This is perhaps a long post, but we feel like it may resonate with many of you...
Waking up and taking responsibility for our lives, all aspects of it, can be overwhelming. Healing is a choice, and a choice most people don't make. Even for those of us that do make the choice, after months or years of deep and laborious work excavating the depths of our crap we can quickly find ourselves back in our old patterns, more discouraged than ever.
Why is that? Why do we choose to go back into the misery? Why do we stay in the dysfunctional thoughts and the self sabotaging behaviors? Why do we choose over and over to not do things we know we need to do to be better, to feel better?
We all want to find the magic answer, the deep dark,(but not too dark) answer that will make sense to us, explain it all, the one thing that we can point to, fix and then flip the switch. The bad news is that one thing doesn't exist. The answer is both simple and complicated. The answer, I believe, is that being healthy in body, mind and spirit is fricking hard. It. is. hard. work. The choice to be healthy isn't a simple choice. To choose to be healthy, you have to do all of the things, and doing all of the things is hard. Movement, nutrition, meditation, connecting with emotions, connecting with others in a real and healthy way, connecting with yourself, vulnerability... You have to choose to deal with your emotions and challenge your limiting beliefs. You have to confront your bull*#^! in a new way, and you all of a sudden have to confront other people's bull*#^! because the new healthier version of you can't tolerate it anymore. It is hard. I think we have a romanticized vision of what being healthy looks like, we think when we "arrive" it will all be easier, feel easier. But in some ways, in a lot of ways it is harder. Being awake is hard. Staying conscious takes work, and learning to tolerate plenty of discomfort is part of it. Confronting your shadow parts can be draining and discouraging. Healing is not a straight shot out of discomfort. A huge part of healing is learning to tolerate pain and discomfort, building your capacity to process past and present pain....
You see, staying asleep to all of these layers is way easier, but the accumulated pain can also become unbearable. So what to do? When I am in this space, where it all feels hard: being awake, and knowing I can't go back to sleep (figuratively) but I can't help but fantasizing about unknowing all of the things I now know.... when I am in this headspace I know I am caught in a perpetual state of overwhelm.
3 things to do:
1. Get some rest, when we usually reach a point where it all feels too much, we are beyond tired and more in the realm of exhausted. Nap, go to bed a little earlier. Think of physical sleep as a reset. Our brains and our bodies need the restorative healing and recalibration that sleep can bring. When we can get an appropriate amount of sleep we can be so much more Awake in our day, we can tolerate discomfort with a little more ease. Sleep will help us increase our emotional capacity. It also helps us to be able to see the bright side, to access the elevated perspective of why we want to be Awake in the world.
2. Drink some water and breathe. One of my favorite quotes from Glennon Doyle is:
"I tend toward dramatic thinking. When I have a problem or feel icky I tend to think the solution is that I have to move, and I need a new family, and a new house and a new religion and need to start all over and everything is terrible. But what I really need is, like, a glass of water." It is so easy to attune to how dire everything is. Our brains easily and willingly collude in this. In addition to being tired and overwhelmed, when I am in this space I am usually dehydrated, and probably holding my breath a lot. And when I am dehydrated and not getting enough oxygen, I am not grounded and my brain and body are even more stressed. Not taking full breaths and dehydration literally fuels anxiety and misery. When my brain and body are stressed, I am not able to elevate to a higher perspective. So drink a glass of water and breathe. Replenish the healthier neural pathways you have been working on strengthening.
3. Reconnect, with yourself, reconnect with God or your higher power and reconnect with another human. Preferably another trusted human who can hold space for your struggle, someone who can relate and support you without trying to "fix" you. Being seen and feeling understood settles us. Reconnecting with yourself is essential and also settles us. Asking yourself "what do I feel, where do I feel it and what do I need?" Is my method to drop back in. Just naming what is happening, acknowledging how we feel it and asking what we need can help us start to settle back in our body and not perpetuating the cycle of abandoning ourselves. Reconnecting with spirit, through a prayer for grace or guidance can also help us settle, feeling connected and supported by something bigger than us is a valuable resource that we can draw from. Reconnecting at all of these levels helps to bring you back to baseline. From this place we can attune to the positive and empowering aspects of why we continue to work on a healing path.
None of the work or healing insights and progress is gone, you just need to come back to it. Getting overwhelmed happens. Some days we may have to bring ourselves back a million times, some days maybe only a few times. Regardless, it is all ok. It is the practice of coming back to ourselves that strengthens that pathway and knowing.
The actions may seem small, but they are foundational. It is in the small, but essential actions, that can help lead us back to the bigger tasks we want and or need to step back into as we continue our quest to be Awake in our life.
Just keep going. Keep moving, this world needs your light, it needs our collective light.🧡
Oceans of Love,
Stacie and Stacy