Let's face it. We're human, and a lot of moments in life really remind us of our humanity. For example, I have struggled mentally my whole life. I've been able to use my intellect to transform negative thoughts into positive ones, I've been able to wake up daily and create a routine of gratitude and awareness, and I have also been imprisoned with the pains and struggles of my own little world. Or at least I thought so.
You see, I realized this year that if I want my life to change and things to change that are truly outside of me, and some of which, outside of my control I need to both 1. Have the discipline to create rituals that will allow me to change the things I can control, and 2. Learn to shift my perspective longterm to be able to accept that which I cannot control.
I recently realized that I have high anxiety. I've learned to move so fast with my thoughts and my interactions with people being parallel to a world that moves so fast. I found this quite boring and unfulfilling in my day to day life. So, I decided I needed to figure out how to calm my nervous system down. I stopped believing in western medicine a long time ago to "heal" my issues because frankly, it is only a temporary aid that allows for a mental escape from the situation, which feels so freaking good that, by the time you come down from that you're twice as angry because you're now feeling everything you just suppressed.
So, as a whole person who recognizes the power of true healing - holistic healing, I decided that research would be of my best interest and would allow for healing long-term.
So here's what we must face: We are addicts. We are addicted to coffee/caffeine, we are addicted to sugars, processed easy-to-prepare food, trans fats that are so juicy and delicious to the palate, fruity candy and juices that are both perfectly tart and sweet all at the same time, and last but not least, so much salt in everything we eat. Trying to take this away from us would be like taking away a baby's favorite blanket, or taking away our sense of who we are! That sounds absurd but its the truth. This is "who we are" and this is "how we eat and we've always eaten." How can we just up and change that? We are all aware of the problems these foods cause such as unnecessary fat on the body, inability to move our body as we would like to, mental cloudiness, a decrease in energy, and eventually, disease. We also may forget sometimes that these foods disturb not just the physicality of who we are but the emotional, the mental, and the spiritual parts of our beings. A lot of this food increases anxiety - hence my ways of being so quick alongside the moving and growing economic society we live in. And to clarify, when I use the term "quick", I simply mean quick thinking, or rather, constant thinking. We need more people who know how to slow down life and move at a pace that seems almost nonexistent. We need people to remember that they are whole beings who must learn to fight the urges and addictions and transform into having new, healthier habits. We need to be those people! We can be those people who create healthier habits and do the rituals even when we don't feel like it.
Let me give you an example. Yesterday, a Monday, I woke up late around 10 am from being completely exhausted of a weekend full of work. I woke up with the overpowering feeling of defeat. Already. I felt depressed and all of these emotions were coming up for me. Truthfully, the details of why I was feeling these ways really don't matter right now, what matters is what I chose to do despite them.
I immediately grabbed my journal and tried to work all of these feelings out with pen and paper in search of some relief. I didn't really have the energy to do this so I just laid there and cried. I had a huge to-do list that I'd written last week and I just stared at it with the feeling of deep sadness. I began with the thoughts of doubt... "why am I trying to be a Life Coach for others? I'm no good at this, clearly! I have no clients yet. Is this really what I'm supposed to be doing? I'm not good or loving enough. I think too much. Ugh, if this is all true, then I have to start completely over." The horror of those thoughts taunted me all day long. I then made myself get dressed, fashioned with my headphone worn as a scarf, brushed my teeth, and I prepped the sad playlist of songs that would ring in my ears all day.
I made my first moves of the day: I ate a bowl of cereal and started a load of laundry. I ran to the grocery store and the bank accompanied by my heavy tunes, and then I made myself a scrumptious early lunch: leftover Ribeye up cooked to medium on the stovetop, sauteed mushrooms, and two over-medium eggs. I took a 45-minute nap on the couch and slowly got up and began cleaning the entire house! I scrubbed counters, the toilet, and bathtub, swept and mopped the floors, vacuumed rugs, washed laundry, and dusted all wooden furniture. Still listening to my depressing songs, I decided to go out and buy cushions for my new couch! I then treated myself to a delicious salad for dinner and came home feeling a little better, but still pretty low, so I literally forced myself out of the door to run at least a mile in the neighborhood. I then spent the evening with a clean house, a clean body, and what started to feel like, a clean mind. I ended the day reading a spiritual book that was the cherry-on-top of perspective shifting.
Why am I telling you all of this? Because today I woke up on the other side of these dreadful, drowning feelings. I woke up happy and energetic and with the feeling of aliveness. I woke up remembering what it means to be a vessel of love in the world. I woke up feeling proud of myself for my productivity and my accomplishments. I needed to push myself, especially when I didn't feel up to it. I could've laid in bed all day long and then felt like complete and total shit, and even moreso like a failure than I did at the beginning of the day. My message is not to be confused with giving yourself rest and a break when you need it, rather a reminder to have compassion and love for yourself by doing what makes you feel better. It felt better to use my body and complete all of the tasks on my to do list, while simultaneously allowing myself to feel what I was feeling. There was a lesson in there that I am now able to see: Get out of your head and into your body; into your heart. I allowed the emotions to be felt and move through me rather than suppressing and slowing down the process of healing.
There is a lot that can get us down in our lives: family, past traumas, patterns of thought, doubts, emotions, the news, chaotic stories, and the list goes on and on; but the meaning of life is what will always bring us right back up: Love. Love yourself. Have compassion for yourself. Take care of yourself. Fill up your cup and see how much different the world will look.