gently, gently, gently…

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I tend to go all or nothing when I tackle a new health or self-care plan, and the result is that I usually never finish what I begin. I recently did that with “The Artist’s Way”, and I frequently do it with the gym, my diet, my fitbit. I know that baby steps are the answer to long term change but I seek quick feedback and results.

I recently posted about how my self-care routine can feel overwhelming, time consuming, and self-indulgent. I don’t know why it feels so self-indulgent to do nice things for myself such as exercise and meditation, when it doesn’t feel so to watch 6 hours of Netflix in a row.

I recently started the “Yoga Every Day” program on Gaia. It’s just 15 minutes a day, some days more physically challenging and some days just breath work. At the end I’m always able to slip easily into a meditation. I love it so much sometimes I want to do another 15 minute session, but I’m doing things differently this time – so I stop myself and I look forward to it the next day. Baby steps.

I also started walking for 30 minutes a day. I’m even more gentle about this, if I miss a day I just walk 60 minutes the next day. These are gentle walks, along the slough near my house; I stop and watch the geese and cranes, pick blackberries and eat them with purple-stained fingers.

I’ve been listening to Marianne Williamson’s livestream every Wednesday, and last week was inspired to order the main text for her teachings: A Course in Miracles. I started the 365 day workbook last week as well, and am on day 7 today.

These 3 things are filling me up, connecting me to my source, as well as grounding me in my body and to the earth. I tend to live in my head and often feel like the world is dream-like. This may sound nice but it can be disorienting. Yoga and walking and nature are a wonderful counterbalance to the meditations and prayer.

I’m more mindful of what causes me stress. I’ve noticed that feeling like I MUST write in my journal daily makes my chest constrict, so I’m letting it go. I ordered a new Tarot deck last week, and though I’m absolutely IN LOVE with it, it’s going to take a bit of study to become familiar with this deck. It made my heart race a bit, so I put it aside.

After the tough work of gaining sobriety from alcohol, I’m finding the messiness inside that I’ve been hiding from. There are so many layers of issues, and addictive behaviors pop up to replace each other like a game of whack-a-mole. I used to think that quitting alcohol was the hard part, but I’m starting to realize it was just the beginning of a life-long discovery of and love-affair with myself. And I’m  learning to listen to that still, small voice inside whispering  “gently, gently, gently…”.

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