“When your mind is stuck, move your body.”
In the pan-ultimate of pop culture philosophizing, I’m taking that slogan from an old running shoe commercial as really sound advice. And taking it a step further. There is definitely something to be said for getting out of your head and just moving, especially when you’re stuck. I’ve found great value in abandoning an habitual walking route to just meander deer trails and dead ends. There’s something about just letting go and following your gut and not caring about where you end up, that even exercised while exercising can trickle down and start manifesting in other areas of your life. Very good life training, doing something different and letting yourself get a little lost.
“If you want to experience something different, you have to do something different” That fridge-magnet mantra had been popping up in my mind over and over again for months. In a time where I’d not only been stuck (and VERY frustrated), I could see clearly all the patterns in my life I keep cycling – in my health, in my romantic relationships, in work and finances, everything. I already had the capacity to step back, see: “Oops, there it is. I’ve been here before.” But even bringing that mindfulness and understand to myself and my life, I knew there was some meta-understanding – some connecting thread that I was just not getting! All these separate issues in my life were all stories on the same theme – and like a grade nine book report gone awry, I just couldn’t see the overarching theme!
I spent months trying to force an epiphany (pausing while you laugh at that). Yes forcing an epiphany, and no it didn’t go well… at all. I think you can herniate your soul pushing that hard. It doesn’t matter you know that’s what you need and all the stuff you are frustrated with will shift if you can just… bloody well get it, damnit!
Abandoning all attempts to force that frickin’ epiphany, I decided: “Well, I can see all these patterns, let’s interrupt them.” So I did. People I’m usually patient with I’d yell at. People I wanted to yell at I tried just shutting the hell up and seeing what got sorted on its own. I let go of things I thought were important to me, embraced stuff I couldn’t possibly see could get me anywhere. I asked things of people I thought would let me down, and expected less from people I used to count on. Instead of saying, “Meh, not my thing.” I’d say “Sure, why not?” I’d push myself to go to events by myself, to meet people I wouldn’t normally hang with.
Now I wasn’t just on a beserker tear-up. Interrupting my patterns meant ignoring logic to just answer that still small voice inside of me. Trusting it, even when it called me to push way out of my comfort zone, or I feared it risked hurting or upseting people I loved. There were some upsets for sure, but more than anything I found that following my gut and speaking my truth broke up patterns, set me free of encumbrances, and shifted things for other people. Like leaving the well trod trail and bushwhacking, meandering through deer trails, I set off, not knowing where those choices would lead.
Well they lead to the motherload my friend! Early this year I had my much sought after epiphany. Then, like the lead domino on a branching set… clinkclinkclinkclink everything shifted. EVERYTHING changed. Finally seeing how all those stuck patterns in my life were connected changed everything. I didn’t even have to do anything. It’s not like my realization meant my life had a new business model I had to sit down and implement in all my departments, nope – everything just changed, all at once!
My dating life is a whole different world than it was just months ago; I’m finding for the first time I’m being courted rather than pursued. On the health front, while I’m by no means spontaneously cured, there’s been a major shift and I’m finally moving out of this two year relapse; plus enjoying a levelling out of the vast oscillations my energy usually flips through. On the work front, opportunities are presenting themselves to develop employment in areas I’d never even thought of: “I could actually get PAID to do the things I love? Get out! Right on!” All the sudden, my life is moving in ways I’d never even imagined, ways that just fit.
And most gratifying for me (and the biggest relief!) is seeing the constant push and pull of trying to reconcile the spiritual and the mundane in my life, that deep spiritual loneliness I’ve felt as I’ve moved deeper, seemingly alienating me from everyday life and people (like the episode of the Simpsons where Homer get the crayon removed from his brain and he starts seeing life through Lisa-esque eyes), that feeling like I could never really fit in either world… gone. Just gone. Spontaneously resolved. There’s no trying to fit into either world, I simply fit in them both, realizing they’re not really separate at all. I now move through my days in a background of peace and contentment, happy but no longer overwhelmed with the intense joy I spoke of in the Fire Hose of Love piece. Balanced.
Not to say I don’t still have my shitty moments, this shift has also triggered the release of a lot of crap that I’ve got to work through, but somehow even that is different, I don’t feel quite so alone in the process, or ill equipped, or something. A new patience and ability to trust the unfolding. Even in the scary, hard, upsetting things I still go through.
There’s still a lot for me to learn in this space – like breaking through a copse of trees and finding a whole new valley to explore. I’m now set to discovering what this life is like, finding out who I am all over again. A whole lot more risk-taking in my future as I learn where my limitations are now. To trust in my own wisdom to speak with authority on the things I can (and continue to discover where my ignorances lie). Adjust to new relationships with new people, and changes in the people who’ve been in my life for years.
I pushed myself out of my comfort zone to get here, and know I’ll be out of my comfort zone for a while. Yet I carry some sort of constant comfort with me while I do all the new, and scary, and uncertain things. My life, unstuck, unfamiliar, full of potential.