My have-to’s

I release all “have-to’s” in my life. You know all those things we “have to do”, I let go of it; it doesn’t mean that I don’t do anything anymore , it’s more that I let go of the idea of “have to’s” in the sense that I need to do something  at the expense of my joy.  

A few days ago I had some old stomach pains, at first I did my best to ignore them but then they crept in and I got angry. I know it can’t hurt me but it makes life uncomfortable.  The pains came in as I was going through a cleaning and organizing period in my home where I had to get it all done and had to get it done now. I didn’t want to do any of it and the stress that it was causing me was literally paining my stomach but I thought : suffer through an it will all be done soon.

I am really done suffering through things. 

The way I see it, to avoid this undue stress, I can either not do the action, which when it’s possible that works well or sometimes when it’s not possible (like having to feed my children when I am not in the mood to cook or prepare food) perhaps I could change my mindset and approach the task with joy and love.

I know for certain my body does not respond to being forced into something anymore and I no longer wish to operate out of a mile long to-do list that has to be done right away.  There’s always something to do and the way to approach it is in the moment,  with joy and love.

Be true to yourself 

Today  I was enjoying myself on Facebook, there seemed to be many posts that were positive and uplifting and I was so happy and proud to be me in this exact moment. Then I came across it, that one bad comment from that one person who for the most part has not rubbed me too much in the wrong way but is certainly is a strongly opinionated person with some toxic energy.

I got mad. Really mad. Her comment made me so angry. Then I got mad I got mad. I shouldn’t let it bother me I told myself, she has strong opinions about everything. 

Being mad was a natural reaction, no need to should all over myself, I recognize it as anger and now time to let go.  Then I thought, why do I follow this person? And I remembered that I had unfriended her in the past and when I added her back some time later she had some words to say to me, she certainly wasn’t a nice person and even though she’s sort of family, I don’t need that. I stopped following her today and decided to let that go, there is really nothing gained by me to stew in her negativity. I don’t even see her daily, I may have seen her once in the past ten years, but I suppose I fear what others may think. 

Right now in my life what I really need is truth and that truth is in regards to me, I need to speak my truth and I need to be true to myself and I won’t accomplish that by trying to appease everyone else. Some people have toxic energy that just doesn’t feel right and they may even be close to you but it doesn’t mean you have to stew in that toxicity and try to make them right or have it seep into you.  I release her now and I do so in love, we just aren’t the right energy right now and in my truth I must allow myself to connect with others who are  the same, with love.

It’s so important right now and kind of cliche but it’s so true: be true to yourself!

My truth

I struggle daily to find my voice, to speak up for myself in a loving way, not a reactive hateful way.  Sometimes I think that I should be doing more, speaking my truth in some sort of grand way but I realized today that the sum of my parts is so much larger than I realize and that the more I practice the easier it is to speak my truth with everyone. All these moments of truth in my life, add up and make a big impact on my life and really do connect me in a loving way to my true self. 

Blogging has been a big way that I speak my truth, I don’t hold back, it is what it is and I put it out there in a vulnerable way but it makes me feel lighter. Not everyone agrees with what I have to say, but that’s okay, so long as I am not maliciously trying to hurt someone or coming from a place of hate, I am happy to simply speak my truth. I am finding it more and more comfortable to speak my truth with all my friends and everyone I meet, I can respectfully disagree or give my own opinion without worry that it isn’t the same and I will be disliked. I have noticed through social media I am really starting to comment on various things, share my opinion and speak my truth and it seems to really hit home when I do it from a place of love.

The most important thing I have noticed is that when I do speak my truth from a place of love, I am actually starting to leave it be – I will release the idea and almost say good bye to it in my head, not trying to read into any response.  I am finding when I speak from a position of love I am often met with love as well.  The most important thing is the more that I practice, by even little comments on someone’s Facebook post,  the more I connect with that loving truth and feel more confident in doing so.

Practice really does make perfect!

Support

I recently joined a health group, it’s mainly on Facebook and I joined because the rules (or general guidelines for good health) are simple and require no additional costs on my part (ie: I don’t have to buy certain products or eat a certain food group). The group is about eating healthy: lots of fruits and veggies, drinking water, 30 minute daily exercise – that kind of idea.  The group is nothing  outlandish and very simple for me, just what I needed because I can often make things way more complicated then they have to be. Personally I joined to get some new recipes because I am in a funk in terms of my healthy eating regime.  I also wanted little reminders from the group to continue on my path, just a little support.

The group started at a time where I was gearing up to throw my sister a surprise party, this meant packing up the kids and traveling four hours away. It was hectic, a little bit stressful and really hard to stick to the basic rules.  As I posted the other day, when I am not eating well it affects my mental state as well and I am often more moody and irritable; this weekend was no exception, I went to an ugly spot. All the wonderful messages of support and community from this group was annoying me because I wasn’t there myself – I wasn’t in a good place. 

One woman posted a picture of herself at the gym and she looked so fit and so small and I got really mad. It sounds ridiculous now but I was so pissed that this women posted a picture of herself at the gym because obviously she needed the attention. What was she even doing in this group – she obviously doesn’t need a group like this!!?

That’s where I can live if I don’t give myself love by eating well. Boy is it an ugly place to live.

Having come back from my trip and I have had some time to regroup and follow my prescription for myself:  I have started to eat well and move my body again and take some time for me. I now look at that group and see a beautiful community of support.  That women who posted a picture for motivation – from herself and from the rest of us, she is looking for support.  I  am ashamed to admit it but sometimes supporting people unconditionally without judgment isn’t my first thought, certainly when I have just had a weekend of gorging myself on junk food and alcohol it is probably the furthest from the truth.

In life, one of my goals is for women and everyone for that matter, to support everyone unconditionally. I really do want everyone to help each other in small ways and big, without judgment, just love.  Let’s face it, it takes a village to raise these children and it takes a community to band together in love to make it so. I don’t believe man is adherently evil, I believe we are beings of love and if I want to see support for everyone I have to be that change and be support for everyone.

In my health challenge I haven’t had any real big learning moments in terms of health but I have certainly learned a lot of the value of support; and if I take nothing away but that,  then I consider this money well spent.

The prescription to myself

There is a prescription that I take in order to feel that connection to my true self: it’s meditation,  eating well, a bit of exercise, writing in some shape or form,  and some real solid moments to myself. Those moments to myself constantly change  but they may be a bath, colouring,  music or art – it’s often relaxing and often times creative.

This past weekend I spent helping celebrate my sisters birthday and surprise weekend party and I didn’t physically have much space and time for myself. That coupled with lots of unhealthy eating made me realize that I do indeed have a prescription for myself that when I follow leaves me in a much better space.

A few things surprised me, how eating poorly really does effect my head space, depression can come waltzing in really easy when I don’t eat well. I thought my eating habits were just a way to be healthy or even to “not be fat” but it’s so much more than that, I realized this weekend that what I eat effects my mood and my mind deeply. It’s important for me to continue to eat well to tell myself that I am important enough to have this positive head space.

The other thing that surprised me was just how important that time to myself is. I was in my sisters apartment which is a small one bedroom and things were tight to say the least, there was little space for me to even be alone let alone to take time out. Really it took a bit more effort and I didn’t want to put that time in and thus suffered the consequences.

I had many breakdown moments and could really feel the seeds of depression try to sprout. I didn’t feel in a good spot but once I got there, it was very hard to leave. I did not feel like myself. It was like being taken a hold of and it was a challenge to break free; but,  I did and I will continue to follow my prescription to allow my true self to shine. 

When I follow the prescription for myself I end up in a better spot, it doesn’t mean that I don’t have bad things happen or that I won’t be in a bad mood; it simply means that I will have a better base to start from and as I continued on my journey I need a solid foundation in which to stand on.

Acceptance

Can you accept yourself as you are in this exact moment?

I struggle with that terribly – I often can’t accept myself as I am in any moment.  I can always find faults with myself be that how I look, what I do, where I am, I can always find something I don’t like and can’t accept. Even in my meditation practice this morning thoughts will come in my mind and I’ll be disappointed in myself instead of just recognizing it and gently refocusing. I’ll pass by a mirror and look at a spot on myself and think maybe if I work harder I can eliminate that.

I can’t seem to accept who I am with love at this moment, I can’t seem to love myself as I am right now.  Life has trained me to be so critical of myself, it’s a hard thing to break.  The danger of not being able to accept myself is I am always working towards making myself “better” – I use quotes here because there it is never an end result. Take body image for an example, as hard as I once worked, and as in shape as I once was it was, it was never good enough : I could still be thinner or have more muscles, I could always find something wrong. The body I had six years ago was a body I wish for today.  So that leads me to think the body I have today could be the same, it could be something I wish for in the future so why not love it now.

Practicing present moment acceptance can be a bit difficult, especially if you’re like me and have had years of conditioning to look in the mirror and find a fault.  It can be difficult to retrain your brain not to see the faults and just to love everything you see in the mirror as you pass it.  I know one of the exercises I need to start doing again is to pass by a mirror and love and accept myself as I am in that very moment.  It’s a little challenging at first and at the start it will feel almost like I am lying when I tell myself that I love and accept myself but I will keep practicing that and overtime I will come to truly feel that unconditional love and acceptance for myself, in this present moment. 

A better balance

I am sitting here in the dark in my living room writing from my phone, I often do that as it can be a challenge to get me to sit at an actual computer.  I feel a really nice sense of peace as my salt lamp is filling the room with a gentle orange glow. I feel really happy this week. I have been meditating regularly, been eating well and moving my body.  Even last night when my little mans cough got him up I wasn’t angry like I have been in the past.

But…

And yes there is a but…

Tomorrow is my husband’s birthday and we will be celebrating Friday night and Saturday night and I know tomorrow will be filled with pizza and drinks and cake. I am afraid I will fall into bad habits and eat and drink myself into a version of myself that doesn’t provide me with a gentle glow.  Sure, I could eat broccoli and sit in the corner and be even more miserable, so I probably won’t.

This is an opportunity to practice a better balance. Maybe I’ll have salad with my pizza, maybe I’ll have a small piece of cake, maybe I’ll just enjoy one drink, maybe I’ll enjoy just a little instead of going down the rabbit hole. If cranky thoughts come up, I can let them pass. A little indulgence from time to time is a good thing.

I have never really been one for moderation, it’s all one way or another and I don’t like being that way : it will take me some time to get used to the idea that a little bit here or there won’t hurt.  My New Years resolution of “just a little bit of effort” will help me to refocus.  Maybe my meditation won’t be at the exact same time, or my diet be exactly the way I want it, but I can flow with where it takes me and then put a little bit of effort to pull myself back on this path ; maybe I won’t even fall off my path much, or at all.  With a better balance I can flow and relax into life and let go of the worry for the future, in fact I won’t even think of it and will try to just take it one moment at a time.

To speak your truth

I am learning to speak my truth and it can be a lesson that I find a bit challenging.  I think it’s because speaking your truth requires a bit of tact. I often associate speaking your truth with being a little mean because I am saying things that may hurt your feelings and that’s up to you whether or not to take it in. Speaking your truth, like everything in my life, needs to come from a place of love. 

I have come to think that when I speak my truth that is supposed to hurt your feelings, and that’s really not the case. I mean I am sure it could but if I am to be honest I should do so from a place of love, not a place of anger.  Often I am feeling that I should be speaking my truth when I have been wronged or angered.  When I am in that state of anger and I am speaking my truth from there – that is not my truth, it’s been skewed by my anger.

Speaking your truth is a process by which you say something that your truly feel, and it often does come in a negative territory, where someone may put you down or make you feel unease, the trick is to speak your truth from a place of love and let it be. That’s the hard part saying what you need to say from a place of love and letting it be, without agonizing over how it was interpreted or fear of anticipating of an argument. It may never be accepted by the other but that’s okay, the point isn’t them, the point is you, setting that truth free in love.

You can never know how people truly feel or act, they may mean one thing but you take it as another.  Speaking your truth means saying what you feel but it doesn’t mean hurting someone else, it like everything in life can and should come from a place of love.  

New Year

Today is a new year and I am a firm believer in new year resolutions. It’s not the only time of the year you can refocus and recommit but there is a great energy in a new year to refocus so why not take advantage of it and resolve something in your life.

Right now in 2017 I have decided that my New Years resolution is effort, to bring just a little bit more effort into my life. Personally, I am always expecting someone to save me, running away from problems or life, and always hoping that I won’t have to do anything but expecting everything to be done for me. Great things can and do happen in my life but they take a little bit of effort on my part.

What does a New Years resolution of effort look like? It is adding a little bit more effort into everything and that in turn adds a lot of love to myself, essentially I am letting myself know that I am wonderful and I am worth it. A little bit more effort in eating well,  a little bit more effort when I cook, a little bit more effort when I exercise, a little bit more effort when I parent, a little bit more effort in my relationships, a little bit more effort in love, a little more effort in time for myself, a little more effort in daily mediation practices, a little more effort in me, a little bit more effort in everything I do but instead of doing it in a – “work harder because you need to”, it’s more of a “give a bit more effort because you deserve it”,  a little more effort says I am worth it, it is an effort in love.

2017 I am done with my “have-to’s” and “should do’s”, and want to enrich my life with a bit more effort in love. There is no schedule, there is no direction, there is just a little more effort on my part, in a place of love.