Hey! Happy 2021! I just want to have a moment of silence for 2020, and all the lives that have been changed and the shifts that happened—welcomed or unwelcomed… *Big breath in, big breath out*
How did you celebrate saying goodbye to 2020? Or, did we just kind of raise a glass or mug and go, “Hello, 2021, but I’m still too tired from 2020 to celebrate right now. BRB.”
It’s ok if you’re still feeling the slog of the last year; coming into this new year isn’t as easy as writing a new date on a check or in an email. It’s really a lesson in letting go—not forgetting but taking a step forward and looking forward.
One of the realities I’ve seen in my life is how critical it is to move forward efficiently and in a balanced way by living holistically. When one thing is off, the other elements start to get off soon enough. You know, when you’re lacking sleep, your physical body gets tired, your mind/emotional space is a little out there, and then you’re doubting the Universe’s direction because you’re exhausted. In my eyes, this existence is a packaged deal.
And to not sound too fluffy and all zen, I can tell you when the roof leaked a couple of nights ago there was a lack of sleep, emotional WTH moments, and uncertainty in the upcoming move because, you know, water was coming down the chimney in my bedroom three feet from me. Oh, PNW, how I love thee (and home insurance folks). And I hadn’t slept on New Year’s Eve not because I love staying up celebrating all night, but because a neighbor did all the celebrating for us with fireworks and the dogs hated life all night long.
So, you know, when things happen what we can do is check in with our bodies, mind and emotions, the inner spiritual Center, and our environment (that’s in our control).
Real quick, here are other posts on FSW that touch on holistic living:
- Holistic Living & Having a “Growth Mindset”
- Time for a Holiday Detox: Follow Your Instinct and Give to Yourself
- Life Lessons: Get Out of Your Own Way with 3 Strategies
- Getting Organized in 2020: 5 Tips to Move Forward Today
- During a Crisis Get Back to Basics: 8 Ideas to Try Today
- To Lighten Up: Laugh, Live, and Go Forward
- How to Treat Yourself with Tenderness: 4 Simple Steps
You can tell that I kind of like the idea, and it can look like different things to different people. But we’ll dive in from the FSW/Virginia perspective, and feel free to share in the comments below or email me what you think holistic living is any time.
Ah, the Body
I get that all of our bodies are different and our needs are different. That’s what kind of makes this lifetime interesting because we have the chance to take care of ourselves as sentient, physical beings. Our bodies also have this intelligence of sorts, and it’s fascinating (and hard, sometimes) to see how they work and how they’re connected to the other elements of ourselves. Do you find that you hold stress in your shoulders, stomach, head, or even, just everywhere? When we physically carry our emotional/mental burdens or tangible burdens, too, that heaviness can be felt. Who hasn’t felt some of the heaviness, insomnia, or unease in 2020 (or earlier)?
How to reboot:
This walking, talking, moving body is what we have, right? I think that mini-decisions can help it along more than we think. I get that New Year’s resolutions mean trying to dive into 14 workouts a week, but maybe just drinking more water and less soda is a feat. Heck, even wanting to take care of our bodies is a feat, particularly when times get tough.
Start with the one-minute habits–no joke–that can help your body. One minute of deep breathing; one minute of mindfully drinking water. A minute of better sleep, or a minute of walking. Maybe one minute of giving yourself a foot or arm massage or one minute of standing and stretching when you might sit all day. Then, try bumping up some self-love activities for the body to five minutes, then eight, then ten, then fifteen. Soon enough, you’ll probably start to see improvements in how you move and why you move.
Same deal with 7 billion unique circumstances: we’ve got this brain, our experiences (past and present), thoughts, and feelings. No need to dive in much further, because if you’re reading this you saw that I had WTH moments with the roof, lack of sleep because of worries, etc. In future psychology or social work books, all we might have to write is, “2020–That’s All…” and there isn’t much more that’s needed, because we’ve lived it.
Sometimes we see our feelings or thoughts as Enemy no. 1; They claim our peacefulness or our contentment. Thing is, we could write a whole book together about distortions, illusions, projections, etc., but at the end of the day you and I are living life as best as we can with what we have known. But, at this very moment, we don’t have to think of this part of ourselves as an enemy, because it’s there for a reason and to learn from.
I can tell when I’ve got the mind racing thing going on vs. the peaceful meditative stance; I can feel it. Instead of hating myself for it, it means that I have another opportunity to practice meditation and give myself a gift of forgiveness. Our organic brains and history of thoughts are a part of who we are, and as long as we don’t identify solely with this element, we can grow beyond it, holistically.
How to reboot:
So, if you ever struggle with hating your Egoic side, or getting frustrated with your thoughts of fears, burdens, or anger… Try to take a step back for a minute. Hit the pause button, if you’re meant to or have that feeling of completion; or let the thoughts and feelings ride out for a while until you’re left with Your Self. Just sitting there, wholly present. Keep breathing, keep sitting, and be still for a bit. It doesn’t mean you’re empty of thoughts or empty of feelings. But you’re just not letting them control you for a hot second. After you recognize this, give yourself an internal or real hug, because that’s awesome. Your mind is beautiful, Beloveds, and it’s intelligent; your thoughts occur. Our conditionings have happened, but see some of this more with empathy, if possible.
Internal Spiritual Health
I won’t spend a ton of time on this one here, because what we believe as individuals is vast, varied, and can change. And, honestly, I’d like to spend more time on it in another post where I can just type and type about it in more detail. 🙂 So, when I think of spiritual health, it isn’t just the “Big G” word or how you pray or meditate per se. It’s more like how do you re-center yourself after being thrown off. Or, how do you ground yourself after or during a big change in your Life? When you feel empty inside–which can feel peaceful, neutral, or scary, initially–what is there within you? What is your essence? If you don’t know really, that’s ok.
How to reboot:
Sometimes we’re told what to believe, frankly, or we witness it in our cultures or communities. But I’d encourage you to look within and not without on this one. What brings you absolute peacefulness and contentment? Start with that circumstance, and expand upon it. Take some time with it.What fills you up, so to speak, vs. tears you down? Look at that. What do you lose yourself in or what brings you present to the here and now? Relish that and live in it for a time. Friends, we all deserve some peace and we all have the ability to choose what works for us.
Ok! Last way to reset–your environment. Granted, in 2020 our environments went topsy turvy. Some friends and family had work, living quarters, and daycare/school, all in one place: their home. And, sadly, for some, home is basically their bodies because they do not have a place of their own or a roof over their head. I’m not writing this section lightly or without knowledge of peoples’ suffering. All I’m trying to say is: some of what we have to work with can get a reboot.
How to reboot:
We’re getting simple and practical on this one… Here are 8 ways to reboot your environment and I’m really not joking; it could help with confidence. Try one or more and see how you feel going into your day or going into bed knowing you made it happen.
- Make your bed/futon pad.
- Hang up or fold one outfit from the day or one meant for tomorrow.
- Line up your shoes.
- Do dishes.
- Dust, sweep, or mop.
- Cook a meal from scratch (even spaghetti and a jar of marinara). *This one is more for confidence vs. cleaning your space*
- Turn off technology–if you’re not employed for a night shift–by 9 p.m. or earlier, and chill.
- Create one space for you and your downtime. Some use the shower or their dining table with tea. Whatever–it’s yours and it’s your temple.
Women/Womxn: We have a tendency to work our bums off or give a lot more than we can sometimes (or should). Or, we’re meant to give time, effort, etc., but we need to rejuvenate ourselves and reboot our lives so we can better help others and keep going ourselves. It’s all about the balance, right? We can definitely feel when we are off-balance even before we have a label for it. Dearests, FSW is here to help you reconnect with your elements and help you in your daily life. If you want to join the FSW Circle for more direct encouragement and connection click here and you’ll also get a free mini-guide to get started rebooting today. And, as I said earlier, if you ever want to email or contact me to chat about FSW topics or what you’re going through, I’d love that. Contact me this way, or leave a comment below. You made it through 2020–so let’s move forward into 2021 dedicated to you, your purpose, and your journey!