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Posts Tagged ‘acceptance’

As indicated, I’m finding myself with interesting challenges surrounding food lately.

What I’ve figured out is that it’s ok to give myself some slack.  In fact, I need it more than prodding myself with the hot iron of fear.

Right now it’s dark.  Alot. 

It’s really cold.  Alot.

By nature, it is the season to settle in, enjoy roasted root vegetables and comforting soups, more down time and less running about.  Our culture seems bent on denying that.

There are holiday preparations, gearing up for family gatherings, (which can bring good times and stress all in one package) and a constant barrage of food related landmines.

These things are true for many people. 

In addition, I was also ignoring the fact that I’ve worked more in the past two months and have a difficult family dilemma that is looming.  I now acknowledge these demand a generous portion of my energy.

When I’m running on empty I know that I start trying to fill myself up, literally, with food, when what I really need is to charge my batteries.

So what can we all do to move through this season of shorter days and longer to-do lists with ease and grace? 

  • We can acknowledge that we may have weariness, sadness, anxiety or even anger tangled in with all the joy and excitement of the holiday season, and not ignore it or actively run from it.
  • We can figure out a way to take time to be still.  This is not an indulgence.  It is necessary in order to stay connected to yourself and your intentions.  More than once someone has shared with me that the most helpful thing I’ve told them is to remember to stop and breathe.  It’s simple and powerful.
  • We can give ourselves permission to let go of things on our to-do lists that don’t feel like choices. 

I really enjoy doing things in the kitchen.  There are people who look forward each year to the interesting basket of things that arrive at their home from my kitchen.  In the past week or so I noticed I’ve gone from enjoying creativity in the kitchen to grudgingly getting through “gotta get it done”.  I gave myself permission to not bake another thing if it didn’t sound like fun.

I’ve noticed in the couple days since I’ve started taking care and paying attention I don’t feel driven and anxious about food.

If you take a moment of  stillness, what will you find is the best way to care for yourself through the holiday season and the rest of this winter?

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Burning the Blob

blobcrop 

I’ve chosen to work through Debbie Ford’s 21 day Consciousness Cleanse.  I’m always up for tweaking the good thing I’ve got going and I know there are some areas of stuck that could use some examining.

One of the exercises suggested that I draw a picture of the dark stuff that lurks, that perhaps is keeping me stuck.  At first it felt a bit silly, but I let it flow and found the act of drawing put me in another part of my brain.  It reminded me of a time when I regularly used artistic expression as a form of release.

I saw this thing as a heavy, shiny, slick, undulating, gelatinous blob that mostly lurked in its assigned corner, but would occasionally cast out creepy arms that slid up into my consciousness, jerking around how I interact with myself or a situation.  They appeared sinuous and slippery, almost oily.  They could schmooze out and do they’re thing but were not easily grasped so I could look at them or have a talk with them before they slipped back into the blob.   I suspected that each arm had a name or function:  FEAR, ANGER, INSECURITY, SHAME.

(Above is my computer generated representation of this blob.  As you’ll see in a sec, I couldn’t share a photo of it, since I no longer have the paper. But that’s a pretty spot on reproduction up there.)

It dawned on me while I was immersed in drawing this thing that in the past, it still had its blobbish qualities, but it was not confined to a corner.  It flowed through me and affected my personality most of the time.  It gave me a feeling of ease to acknowledge how far I’ve come, that my blob had become contained.  I also realized that while I didn’t have to work so hard to hide it, I hadn’t really accepted it.

So I was digging this little exercise.  I felt I had gained some valuable insight.  Then I read the next suggested activity.  Issue forth some suggested words and burn that baby, a symbolic act of releasing the hold of this darkness.  I thought it was stupid not for me and read on.  However, the idea of it stuck and some of the verbage resonated with me.  “…..I ask that you turn what has formerly been toxic into fuel for my future.” (pg 101) So I decided to give it a try.  I headed outside with my little paper in a vessel and lit it up.

I wasn’t ready for what happened.  The sun was shining and the air was crisp, with a little breeze.  The thin paper burned quickly and the ashes were weightless, easily lifting in the breeze and drifting away.  A smile spread over my face and I had this feeling of lightness.

I noticed a shift within myself, a little click inside as I realized the heavy dark thing in the corner could change just like that.  I accepted that this is a part of me and all of a sudden understood on a deeper level that all the energy I had previously put into distracting myself from the blob was now available to me. It could indeed feed the fire that was pushing me toward an ever brighter future. 

As I think about it today, I know it didn’t change just like that.  It’s taken sincere effort and mindfulness, coupled with exactly the right people and circumstances to get to this place.

I’m ever grateful that I’ve found it.

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