We try all sorts of things to take care ourselves and feel better, both in our lives and about our lives. Am I right?
We meditate, do yoga, eat as well as we can, try and remember to get enough sleep and drink enough water. Pay attention to, and spend time with, the people we love. We read books, journal, listen to podcasts, see our doctors and therapists, and we try to get in enough “me” and “we” time.
All those are good. Just remember the thing that determines whether or not they work.
It matters less that you do those things, and it matters more how you do those things.
Go into each of what you do in your day with a grand internal entrance:
Offer a prayer of gratitude and set an intention for diving into what you’re about to do. It helps sometimes to know how long you’ll carve out to do it.
Then, dive in with abandon. Never mind whether or not you like what you’re doing – if you’ve chosen to say yes to it, do it with abandon. With complete devotion.
This how is more important than what your doing.
Let’s take eating, for instance. If you eat all the “right” foods without that gratitude, attention, and devotion… you’re somewhere else. If you’re feeling guilty about what you’re eating or worried about what you’re thinking, you’re somewhere else. If that somewhere else isn’t putting you into a happy, relaxed place (and pace), you’re turning on your sympathetic, fight-or-flight, nervous system rendering yourself unable to rest and digest. Which means it doesn’t matter what you’re eating, your ability to digest will be compromised. If you don’t come out of your meal light, sustained, nourished, relaxed and energized (I mean, food is energy), it’s a clue your digestion could be better.
Same goes for any other activity you’ve got going the rest of your day. Your ability to fully unleash your potential, creativity, and sense of meaning and purpose is limited by the extend to which you’re somewhere else or worried (essentially the same as being somewhere else). Your ability to digest – take in and receive what’s yours to act on… and let go and release what’s not yours – is limited. This limitation is what locks up your mind and body. You might think you’re saving time multi-tasking, but you pay for it this way. This shift may feel hard to unwind, but your totally worth it.
So stop worrying so much about all the stuff you need to do to feel better. Start with going into your day you already have with complete abandon.