When I think about doing and being I feel the chasm between the two. That makes sense when one heavily outweighs the other. I’m currently resting on my bed with two furry felines, magazines (New Dawn and Natural Medicine if you were wondering), journals and my laptop. I’m on a self-dictated Rest Alone Day.
I love to work – my work is so interesting, rewarding and fun! Yet I can also easily do too much of it, along with over-doing general busyness. When that occurs at the same time as back to travel, unravelling new layers of old trauma, some banging into my dear partner (for even more self-discovery of course!), parenting a teen, renegade chickens and coming down with an intense virus it’s time to put the brakes on. And here’s a thing – when I was getting a service on my car about a month ago my mechanic shared that my brakes wouldn’t last the week – they were down to the metal. There was my message.
At some faraway point in my younger years I became a ‘doer’. I thrived on the recognition (energy) that came my way when I was noticed for my writing, accuracy or being ‘good’. Teachers and bosses rewarding me gave me the pseudo-power I craved. That was short-lived, so I had to keep doing and doing. And doing. I knew no other way to feel ok about myself. Well, that’s not true actually – I knew how to be the perfect girlfriend, yet it was all externally focused. I stayed in my head or with the job or the ‘other’, avoiding myself as much as I was unconsciously capable of. My ‘being’ time happened quickly and easily with drugs, sex, food and alcohol. No more work, no more thinking – a relaxing presence, or so I thought. They work until they don’t and their accompanying side issues became a more obvious problem.
Being is a skill I have been quietly relearning over the years thanks to yogic breathing, journaling, nature, parenting and restorative yoga. I still notice the habit of keeping an outwardly focused pace up, disconnecting me from my sense of grounding. I then miss my quiet inner voice telling me what will bring harmony. That's when the louder signs kick in, like my virus letting me know I'd passed my internal stop sign.
Rest, self-parenting and being while I am doing like the yogis do – that’s what I will be practicing on the extended summer break I am gifting myself in one weeks’ time.
Here are some tips you might find helpful:
Regularly check in to see what your physical body is needing before pain or illness demands a more permanent full stop. Is it rest, sleep, water, particular food, vitamins, touch, exercise, fresh air, sunshine, or something else?
Give yourself time to feel your emotions rather than doing to avoid them. That release of pent up energy brings lightness of being.
Witness the quality of your thinking. Scattered, busy minds need soothing. Breathe, become present, slow down. This will bring more being to your doing.
Care for your spirit. Nature, sunshine, beauty, prayer, meditation and gratitude can all help you remember the authentic you that too easily gets forgotten.
Wishing you balance in your being and doing.
Photo by Lenin Estrada on Unsplash
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