Monthly Archives: August 2015

I saw myself in the mirror

It was a wide-angle forward bend. A simple pose. A simple pose with reverberating results.

I was in yoga class, of course. A great way to start my Monday morning and my week overall. We came to the “forward bend of our choice” portion of our practice, and as I leaned forward and looked through my legs, there I was in the mirror, looking back at me.

An opportunity to judge my pose. Absolutely. An opportunity to surreptitiously look around the room, with no one being the wiser. Absolutely again. But I didn’t do either of those. I did something radical instead.

I looked at myself, caught my eye, and smiled. A huge smile. A “great job in yoga” smile. An “I love you” smile. An “I will always love you” smile. And then I smiled back.

Because while I maybe could have used a bit of tweaking on my pose, and I can always learn from others in my yoga class (when I forget to stay on my own mat and I look around the room), my smile of love was all I needed. And wanted. A sign of support and of care from the person from whom I should, and do, want it most.

Wouldn’t it be nice if I could always, or at least more often, give myself that smile? Wouldn’t it be nice if I remembered to shower myself with love and compassion, whenever (or whether or not) I catch myself in the mirror?

It would be nice and I think it’s possible.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and please share this post with others if it resonates with you!

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FOFU – Fear of f—g up

Yesterday I discovered a fear. Well, I knew I had it. I’m sure I’ve even blogged about it. But yesterday it hit me full force. I felt it take over my brain and control my thoughts and emotions. There was no way out.

I’m working through something and there’s a process I’m following. A process with guidelines which I, in my ability to be rigid, can interpret as steadfast rules. And yesterday I chose to break the rules. Well, I broke one rule unintentionally, but actively chose to try something different for a second rule.

All hell broke loose. I could hear the chastising voice in my head – the voice I call my editor – shouting at me that I had f—d everything up. That the process would no longer work. That I had Failed and was a Failure. With intentional capital F’s. That there was no way back. That all hope was lost.

This wasn’t fun and it lasted for longer than I liked. But the good news is multifold.

First, it made me realize that I hadn’t really heard from my editor in quite some time. She used to be a constant in my mind. Everything I’d think or say, she’d have a retort. And the retorts were never supportive and kind. There were lambasting. Cruel. Cutting. She seems to be mostly gone. I hadn’t even noticed that.

Second, it also made me realize that my FOFU could be triggered, and triggered hard. That while it lies seemingly latent most, or at least much, of the time, it is still in me and in me deep. My inability to pull myself out of the negativity, even if only for a few hours, revealed how deeply into me my FOFU was carved. Which gave me an even stronger desire to release it.

And third, and perhaps most important and amazing, is that I did release it. I released my FOFU. I reached for many of the self-care tools I’ve learned and practiced, and I worked them. I worked them hard. I soothed myself with caring words, telling myself over and over that I hadn’t f—d it up and that everything was going to be okay. I caught myself every time my editor spoke up, and reminded myself that what she was sharing wasn’t true. I called people I love and trust to help me realize and remember that “you f—d this up” was a lie. I replaced and replaced and replaced this lie with a more caring truth.

It would be nice if there wasn’t a default FOFU inside me. It would be nice if I did something that felt like breaking rules and I didn’t think I had broken rules, or I didn’t care. It would be very, very nice. But for now, at least, my FOFU exists. And for now, at least, I’ve learned how to ease my way out of it and to be okay.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and please share this post with others if it resonates with you!

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Look up when you’re walking

As it gets colder out I notice my tendency to look down as I walk. I bundle up against the cold, and keep my face shielded from the wind.

But it’s not just cold weather that keeps me from looking up and noticing what’s around me as I walk. And it’s not just me. I’m not the only one staring at my iPhone, frantically texting (or emailing, or snapchatting, or something-ing) as I walk through my town. I’m not the only one missing the simple sights that surround me – and that could delight me if I only noticed them.

The trees are changing colors. I actually get a bit sad in autumn because I don’t like the cold weather. And while it might not be cold now, as the leaves start to change colors I know that cold is coming. But even I have to admit the fall colors are an amazing show…if you look up and notice them.

I was rushing to my early morning yoga class the other day (yes, I get the irony of rushing to yoga) and nearly missed the gorgeous red berries on the bush I was walking past. Because I had one more text I wanted to get out before I took an hour-long break from texting.

It’s the people sitting at a table, staring at their phones instead of each other. It’s the person missing the curb because they’re frantically thumbing someone something. It’s me finding a reason to pay attention to something other than who I’m with and what’s around me. Which is a bit crazy, especially right now when what’s around me are flaming, beautiful autumn colors. When the trees are putting on a show that I’m missing. When the sky is crystal blue and crisp, the sun is shining, and every where I look there’s a bit of nature to appreciate. Or I could stare at my phone.

I think I’ll look up when I’m walking.

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