Monthly Archives: February 2016

It is not about me

It’s funny to say that, since I’ve written a memoir and that’s all about me. I obviously think about myself quite often, and value my perspective enough to write it down and find a way to have it published.

But it’s not all about me.

Other people’s stuff? That’s not about me. Their bad moods, insecurities, tempers, lack of satisfaction, bad situations – they’re all not about me.

I learned to take everything on as a child, and to take everything personally. If it was all about me, then I could do something about it. If it was all about me, then I could fix it. I could change it. I could make “them” happier. I could make it safer and surer for myself.

But it wasn’t about me. And it often still isn’t.

Oh, I really do try and own my own stuff, and take responsibility for my part in things. But I’ve had a habit of taking too much responsibility and owning things that weren’t mine to own. When you believe you “could” make things better, you believe you “should” make things better. And “should” is a bad word and a slippery slope to be on.

And so I keep remembering that it’s not about me.

I am not the center of the universe – good or bad. I am not the one in charge of everything and at fault for everything. I don’t have to change things, or change myself, to make someone happier. It’s not my job.

I work to remember, to remind myself, that my responsibility begins and ends with me. I may want to help others. (I do.) I may go out of my way to help others. (I often do.) I may approach my life and the world with as much love and joy and compassion as I can, and give what I can to bring more light and love to all those around me. I strive to do that.

But all the s—t that I use to take on? It’s just not about me.

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

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Am I kinda pausing, or really pausing?

Again I’m in the middle of a yoga practice, and again the instructor offers me something to ponder, and reorient my mind around.

“Are you kinda pausing, or really pausing?” she asks us, as we rest in a pose. I laugh.

I talk about mindfulness and breathing and pausing much of my day. I mention it to my clients; I remind my family and friends (when they’ll let me); I repeat it to myself. Over and over.

And yet, as the instructor highlighted the difference of a kinda pause and a real pause, I had to admit that I might, more often than not, be on a kinda pause reel.

So I took a breath. A slow breath. I took one again now. And I stopped, noticed my surroundings, and paid attention to some of the tension starting to build inside me as I mentally worked through all of the things I have on my to-do list today. Including yoga. How can I be stressed about how I’m going to make it to my yoga practice? How does that help?

I have time to really pause in my day. I have time to fully stop, notice, pay attention, appreciate (or dislike). I have time to rest for a few seconds, or even a minute, but I, someone who teaches this and professes to live by this, forget to take – or make – the time.

So I can ask myself, over and over again, “Are you kinda pausing, or really pausing?” And if the answer is kinda, over and over again, I can ask myself what it will take for me to really pause. And then I can do it.

Because I know that pausing will help me. It will help me be happier. It will help me be healthier. It will help me be nicer. It will even help me get more done.

I’m going to really pause. And really pause again.

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

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Caring for myself is not self-indulgence

“Caring for myself is not self-indulgence. It is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.” Audre Lorde

My amazing, loving daughter likes to share quotes with me, and she shared this one. I had to share it here. I don’t even know what else I have to say about it, but I’ll try.

It’s been my experience that I, and others, forget to care for ourselves. And that when we do remember, we somehow think we’re being selfish, or self-indulgent. I now like to see this differently.

I like to see that my self-care is self-preservation. It’s necessary. It’s essential. And I love the idea that it’s also an act of political warfare, because, as I’ve already said, I’m still out to save and change the world.

I think the world would be a better place if we all took a bit more care of ourselves. I think we’d all be happier and healthier; we’d all have more to give to others. We’d be making a change for the better, for ourselves, for those around us, for everyone we touch.

It’s an act of political warfare. It’s crucial and it’s needed.

Care for yourself.

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

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