I’m not going to lie, the past few weeks have been rough. Sleepless nights, constant worry, rage… all of those things. We’ve been dealing with some medical issues at the Brown house, in addition to trying to run a remodel from 300 miles away, learn a new job and watch helplessly as our democracy gets pummeled and a pandemic kills a thousand Americans a day.
Stress affects people in different ways. I start second guessing myself which soon morphs into self-sabotage which morphs into a vicious guilt/shame/sadness cycle. I know this about myself and usually have a really good system of self-support and self-care set up. But sometimes the load feels too heavy and I start skipping my meditation/movement/journaling/writing, etc. Which makes everything so much worse. Though I have to say at this moment in history it seems so much worse because IT IS SO MUCH WORSE.
I know I’m not alone in feeling this way and even though I wouldn’t wish anxiety on anyone, it does comfort me to realize that I’m not the only one experiencing the crushing stress of this moment in history.
Last night, tired of everything, including myself, I sat down and started writing on a project I’m really excited about but which had seemed too daunting just a week ago. I realized how much I miss writing and how much I need it. A huge chunk of my creative self has been missing for… well, months, if I’m going to be honest. I need to make space in my life for creating. More magic, please.
Being proactive is also a good way for me to calm the anxieties, so I’m looking at things that have always worked for me and revamping them for my new schedule and life. Setting an alarm on my fitbit to remind me to take a twenty-minute walking break during the day is a good start. Reading before bed instead of doom scrolling would also help relieve my stress.
I’m making lots of soup and baking lots of bread. I’ve decided comfort food should always be on the menu. Today, I’m trying my hand at buttermilk sandwich bread and maybe a cake. Baking eases my stress, makes my house cozy and warm and feeds my soul as well as my stomach.
And soul feeding, heart centering, is really what it’s all about, isn’t it? The only way we can create a more compassionate, equitable and sustainable world is to center our own hearts. I’ve been thinking a lot about what I need in order to have enough to continue the work. What words best express how I want to feel? Here’s a few…
I’m diving deeply into all of these things so that in 2021, I’ll be able to situate my life in such a way that encourages feelings that will, in turn, make me a more efficient catalyst for change. I need to be nourished in order to continue the work I have been called to do. It’s time to really be intentional about how I nourish myself. What have you been doing to cope?