I’ve linked a post for this intention which I think sums it up nicely.
2. Broaden my outdoor activity repertoire
I’d like to try XC skiing, snowshoe running, and downhill skiing (as a snowboarder this should be rather interesting!).
3. Write more simple posts
Posts like “take up space“. Just my thoughts. Flowing words. Not paragraphs per say. Just me writing.
4. Create mental space daily
Setting aside a few minutes each day to just sit and breathe and see where my mind wants to wander. Other tools for creating more mental space could be yoga, meditation apps, going for a walk in the woods near my house.
5. Practice enthusiasm
I feel much better when I’m enthusiastic in general about most everything that comprises my daily existence. I lose this a little bit in the winter months because it’s cold and dark, but now is when I need it most. So, I’m putting the intention out there into space to focus my energy on being enthusiastic throughout my days.
“Just simple days. Simple days of laughing lots and breathing deep and loving with my whole heart and feeling that love back. That’s all I’m really looking for now.” – S.C. Lourie
This quote/concept has been on my mind lately. A LOT.
Taking this concept and looking at it broadly, I agree completely. On the level of how one handles themselves with both small and big things. How information gets processed. What the outlook on life looks like as a result of the latter.
I’m naturally an over-stressed, over-thinking, attempt to do-it-all human. Pressing the pause button feels a little weird and uneasy. It makes me feel like I’m not doing enough. THAT, that right there is the key to why I’m over-stressed, over-thinking, trying to take on the whole damn world in ways that simply aren’t meant for me.
I never fully understood this until very recently. In a sense, I knew that the fear of not doing enough was a key driver in my attempt to do everything, to keep saying “yes”, and as a result of those – a red-handed culprit when examining sources for anxiety and other unwanted mental feels. What I didn’t realize was that the fear of not doing enough directly translated to not being enough.
Making this connection has allowed me to deeply examine each component of my life, big and small, taking into consideration the following questions: 1. WHY is this in my life, 2. how does it really make me feel (not just how I present to society how it makes me feel… rather in the core of my being), 3. what positive/negative attributes does it provide for my current and future life, and 4. do I want to keep it in my life? Simply put, if my answer is: it creates stress for X, Y, Z reason, I continue to partake in it out of fear that I’ll be thought of differently (from others, not how I think about myself), and it isn’t something that I find beneficial or needed for my future self – well… it needs to get kicked out the door.
I’ve realized that no matter what I do, how much I do, or how well I do something – I still will not be approved from everyone in every area of my life. Doing everything doesn’t equal success or happiness or fulfillment. Doing, creating, partaking in the things which light my soul on fire and feel absolutely stellar AF internally are the things I’m actively seeking to keep part of and add to my life because these are what create a sense of fulfillment and connection both to myself and to the broader world.
What are my two-cents? Be honest with yourself about what makes you feel fulfilled, successful, and connected. Include ALL of that in your life because even if it’s a lot – anything you deeply find purposeful will always find a way to be fit into the puzzle of “but there are only 24 hours in a day”. Ditch as much as possible that doesn’t lead to your feeling good about yourself and your existence. We get a small fraction of time on this planet, actively pursue YOUR life/goals/ambitions/manifestations not your neighbors/friends/sisters/fathers. It’s a process to disentangle the WHY behind your actions, but it’s a process entirely worth undertaking.
Figure out you, work on you, and then take over the part of the world that you want to contribute your time and energy to.
“Don’t worry about other people, wear your happiness on your skin. Be proud of what you have built. It only has to make sense to you.” – R.m Drake
Today I thought I would keep things simple and share some pictures from this past week with you! It’s been an overall good week here. Seacoast New Hampshire has officially received its first snowfall of the season and the mountains are becoming more and more narnia-esque. I enjoyed some saddle time today, riding through leftover slush and snowmelt from yesterday’s storm! With the thermometer reading 44 degrees this afternoon, this is the highest the temperature will likely hit for a while now with looking at the extended forecast. Bye bye warmth! I’ll be frolicking in the mountains tomorrow and am looking forward to lots of snow, but for now I leave you with local adventures:
“Feelings come and feelings go. There is no need to fear them and no need to crave them. Be open to your feelings and experience them while they are here. Then be open to the feelings that will come next. Your feelings are a part of your experience. Yet no mere feeling, however intense it may seem, is your permanent reality.” ― Ralph Marston
I hope you’re all having a stellar week so far. Mine has actually been rather low key, which, if you know me in real life, this is typically far from my M.O. To be honest, while it feels completely out of my element and I keep having moments of “I must be missing something” or “what did I forget to do”, it’s been very much welcomed.
I’m not the person who is “good” at enjoying a mellow day, relaxing, spending ample hours at home with nothing on my to-do list. I’m go go go, always looking ahead at the next thing on my agenda or preparing myself for something. I’ve purposefully avoided many lull moments out of fear of not being able to handle them. For me, sitting around all day with nothing to do is EXTREMELY stressful. My brain just bounces around, thinking it needs to be doing something when in reality I’d like it to just shut up. I feel edgy, antsy, uncertain. I try to find things to do, but then realize that nothing actually needs to be done, I’m caught up, everything is under control. It’s weird.
It’s a good change of pace for myself, and it surely is testing me in ways I’m not used to. I’ve been almost craving some mellow time for a while even though I knew it would make me angsty. I think I knew the benefits would outweigh potential risks and as a psych person I’m all about that risk benefit analysis. Insert nerd emoji.
What do I mean by the benefits outweighing the risks as they pertain to me giving myself and my brain some time to simply chill? I’m becoming quite a fan of challenging myself these days, but not in ways I’m used to or even comfortable with for that matter. For me, physically challenging myself is normal. Taking an extra class or taking on another project is normal. Working multiple jobs during school is normal. Saying yes is normal. Opting out of sleep for the sake of having higher productivity and work completion or waking up at 3am to hike is normal. I’m good with these forms of challenge. But, challenging myself to take a step back and allow my being a break is not a normal form of challenge – which is exactly why I’m doing it.
Historically when I’ve taking a “break”, it was faaaaaaar from what most of society would consider a break. And, you know what, that’s okay. It worked for me. That said, I’m at a place in my life where I want to keep testing my comfort zones because many of them have been set in place as protective measures and I realize that for personal development and self-growth to occur, I need to explore these boundary zones if you will.
For a while now I’ve felt this internal nudge to just do something radical in my life. Something different than my usual M.O. Now, I’m not calling a mellow weekend and half of a week radical, but it’s a beginning. Progress is a process my friends, and the journey is often what counts the most. For the time being, I’m testing a lot of my current life, trying to find my edges and sharp spots… the things which make me push back and crawl into the safety of things which I have defined to be okay.
In a way, I’m letting go of the power that I’ve felt I needed to have for so long. I’m letting go of the control, or trying to. I’m a work in progress as we all are – constantly evolving and figuring out where I’m headed. In a bizarre way, it’s actually super cool. I feel like I have a better grasp on things right now even though I feel rather uneasy about a handful of life things. Almost as if by letting go, I’m giving myself permission to go and do whatever makes my soul happy versus what makes my ego and comfort zone happy.
So, what I have been up to since Friday (when this entire fiasco began): ample mental journaling and buying a new notebook because I want to start writing my thoughts down again and see where it takes me, two trail runs, a walk around a local park (which I opted to do instead of my pre-planned bike… *pats self on shoulder*), skipped class to sleep (don’t worry I have a 98 the world won’t end), listened to a handful of personal development podcasts, worked a chunk of hours with a space-heater next to me the entire time (hello winter in New Hampshire), posted things on Poshmark because minimizing, taken a handful of naps, and have tried to give my brain space to process some big decisions.
And you know what, I haven’t spontaneously combusted… yet 😉
“If you want your life to be a magnificent story Then begin by realizing that you are the author…” ― Mark Houlahan