Today I’m reflecting on how essential is to find space in your life for quiet. I know meditating makes me feel better when so do it. A lot better, more focused, clearer. Yet, it also feels indulgent at times when I’m overwhelmed by all that needs to get done. When I sit even for just 10 minutes I am reminded that the thing I need most to help me juggle all the balls and keep from getting overwhelmed is the exact thing I am avoiding because I have so much to do and am feeling so overwhelmed. Is that confusing? It isn’t.
Doing what is in our best emotional and physical interest is hard because there’s always an excuse. The kids have needs, work stuff is unfinished, the house needs cleaning, our spouse needs us for one thing or another. If you looked at the never ending to do list as a reason why you can’t take care of your physical and emotional health there would be a lot of reasons. However, running endlessly is unsustainable.
No matter how busy you are these are the things that help you manage life better. Eating in a way that nourishes and fuels you for your day, getting enough sleep, drinking water, and finding time to give the hamster wheel of your brain time to slow down are all essential to finding contentment. Setting aside the constant rushing toward something to just be present enough to do these things for yourself will change everything. You have one body and one mind and it is ok to take the time to care for yourself.
I spent years sacrificing my own health and emotional wellness to meet the needs of family and work until one day it became very clear to me that I had made a terrible mistake and I was very sick. For months I have been fighting my way back to health and emotional balance. This is a challenge that I know I do not face alone but on this journey back to myself I have discovered that I cannot run endlessly. I have to forgive myself for not being a machine, not being able to say yes to everything and everyone who wants a piece of me, and to focus my attention on what is most important to me for my ultimate good.
Practicing mindfulness and self-compassion are incredible tools to clear away the gunk in our minds and hearts that often make us talk to ourselves in an unkind and unrealistic way. I have often turned to podscasts and guided meditation apps for direction on this practice and it has helped me enormously.
This morning I started my day with a guided meditation by legendary mindfulness and loving kindness meditation teacher/guru Sharon Salzberg. Check it out here and find others on your podcast app or in the App Store.
Sending you love as you face the weekend and all of its potential!