Self care is also in the moments

We hear a lot about self care, and quite honestly that’s a good thing. We can’t truly be of help to another unless our own cup is full, too. There’s a difference between service and martyrdom…

It’s easy to think of self care in the bigger acts. Who doesn’t love the idea of really treating ourselves — whether it’s a massage, a housecleaning service, or a week in the Bahamas?

Me, I’m very much looking forward to having a hot tub again one day. What’s your big-ticket wish list for self care?

It’s also easy to think of self care in the daily acts. This is the thing you give yourself at the end of the day in order to feel either a healthy maintenence or to bring back some sense of balance. Think watching a movie, having someone else cook supper, scrolling on electronics — the things that make us feel like we are taking a little break. The things we actually can do today, and not just have to save it all for our someday wishes.

Lately for me this has looked like taking the time to read a book. What’s your current day’s end go-to?

But the thing is, self care is not just about about the big-ticket items or the reward at the end of the day. Self care is in our moments along the way, too.

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Sometimes you have to just surrender to the adventure

Sewer line froze, closed until spring

Did you know that laundry can be an adventure? Me neither. Until those facilities here at our Winter Quarters shut down because of frozen drainage lines. Closed until spring thaw.

Isn’t it interesting how something can make total sense and yet be so surreal at the same time?

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A gratitude practice, leveled-up.

Home.

The short story is, my spouse and I have moved and are currently in-between homes. We don’t feel homeless, we actually feel like we have returned home. Be that as it may, all our stuff is in long-term storage and I am learning a lot about what it is that I really need. The longer story about this is here.

Something that has been helping me greatly with this time of extended transition and change (some would call it upheaval, chaos, but I prefer adventure…?) is appreciation. Not simply as a concept, but as an actual physical practice.

I have in the past kept a gratitude journal, and you are likely familiar with the concept. But somewhere along the way I stopped the writing-down. (This happened waaaay before packing up everything for storage, by the way.)

Funny thing, I have discovered that it’s easy to forget to be appreciative when I’m not specifically tending to it…

So I am back to a daily gratitude journal practice of actually writing it down. BUT — with a leveled-up twist that I recently learned. One that is making a huge difference in my practice, and therefore my life.

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What is it we really desire?

Our possessions don’t define us. We know this, but there’s nothing like letting go of stuff to really feel it.

Sometimes we choose to release our things: having a yard sale, donating to thrift stores, giving to friends in need. (Yay!) Other times our items are taken from us: lost or misplaced pieces, our home is broken into, the basement floods. (Yikes!)

I am learning a lot about possessions, stuff, and what I think I really need. What if that is part of the purpose of extended transition? A hidden gift within the process?

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When you’re at war with yourself and you win, who loses?

Whoa. Now that’s a mind-blower for me, for sure. I first heard this as I was listening to a free series of conversations about transformations, from NLP Marin.

I was unfamiliar with NLP, and since I can’t seem to stop learning stuff I checked out their website (maybe you are wondering what it is, like I was):

What is NLP?

NLP = Neuro-Linguistic Programming

NLP is the study of the structure of human experience. It is a communication toolkit that provides the ability to discover, utilize, and change our programmed thoughts and behaviors, assisting us in having new experiences in life that are more satisfying, fulfilling, and enjoyable.”

Ooo! Self-awareness, and choosing how to navigate through the world, so that we can have better experiences? Sure, I’m open to that!

But for now, I will sit with that first thought that I shared. I don’t consider myself warring with myself, and yet… Might that simply be another way to describe my patterns of self-help, self-improvement, self-growth? All of my “learning stuff?” When I try to overcome, improve, change my response, isn’t that just another way of saying I fight my Old Story as I work to create a New Story?

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