Whew. The first day of a new month, it’s hard to believe that we are already one month into a new year. So far, 2021 has been fast and furious. So much has happened in the country and in the world, in so little time.
I realized the other day that I lived January like I was racing something, trying to get somewhere as quickly as I could, accomplishing as much as I possibly could along the way.
I’ve never been great about “dialing it back” when it comes to life, pretty much everything that I do, I throw myself into 150%. Especially when I am stressed. It’s kind of an “all or nothing” end game for me, that is at least when I’ve lost connection to my center.
Which, after the month that we just had, on top of being almost ONE FULL YEAR into lockdown due to COVID19, makes a whole lot of sense to me how this can happen. It happens so easily these days with all that each of us are contending with in light of everything going on.
It used to be really difficult to be gentle with myself when I caught myself operating in “high gear”, trying to outrun something. Nowadays, it doesn’t take me much time at all to be able to bring compassion towards myself for doing whatever I can when another piece of my process opens up inside.
See, that’s the thing: we don’t always consciously know when we’re trying to get away from something going on inside of us emotionally that has caused us to be triggered. It just happens quite unconsciously most of the time.
Often, we only recognize that we’ve been operating from a triggered state, after the fact. Sometimes after things feel like they have “blown up” or taken a turn “for the worse” in our life. That’s ok.
Unless you grew up in a family in which it was a priority to attend to your emotional well-being, in a true, body-centered kind of way, you probably did not grow up to become an adult that, by default, can quickly tune into what’s going on with you emotionally.
In order to become more aware of when you’ve lost connection to your center, you have to consciously commit to building that awareness. And this is how growing consciousness begins: after the fact. When you’re standing there looking at the mess, wondering how this happened. Again.
In order to grow consciousness about this deepest and unconscious part of yourself, you have to surround yourself with people and opportunities to receive loving feedback about what you’re doing, your energy, your behaviors, thoughts, you know the drill.
And it takes a lot of courage and commitment to seek out that kind of honest support that will lovingly reflect back to you what they see about you. And then it takes a double dose of courage to actually take in what they share about you.
So, that’s what I am focusing on for February: slowing things down and working on being more present in the moment, whatever it is that is happening in my life. You know, it’s not about finding any sort of “state” of existence and staying there, that makes us happy.
It’s the ability to bring love and support to whatever it is that is going on at any point in time in our life. That’s both the hardest thing to do for many people and yet the essential practice if you want to find lasting peace and satisfaction.
So, the next time that I find myself feeling like I am frantically “pedaling in the sand”, I am going to experiment with living this as an invitation from the universe to slow the pace of my heart and invite what needs to emerge for my next piece of growth, to show up.
Like the pace of the earth that supports us, while in constant motion, the growth of your highest being moves so deeply and subtly that it’s easy to miss these precious moments for growth.
Kate is an INFJ-3 on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and Enneagram.