I know I’ve been a bit quiet lately. And I debated about explaining why. Not because its some drastic event or some big secret, but because sharing the personal stuff makes me uncomfortable…its outside my comfort zone.
But it is for that very reason that I am writing this post, even if (perhaps especially if) no-one even reads it. Because I know how important it is to push through the boundaries we set for ourselves and get outside the comfort zones we have created.
So, I’ve been a bit absent lately because I am in a funk, in a rut and I didn’t really know how to get myself out of it, and what’s perhaps worse, I didn’t really care about getting out of it.
It all started about 6 weeks ago when during the last lesson of a ski trip, I fell spectacularly on a black run and f**ked up my knee. Yeah, it happens. No biggie. But two days earlier, on the same ski trip my mobile phone was stolen. Again, sh*t happens, no biggie, especially because I’m usually a fairly positive person and I don’t let the little bumps in the road deter me from enjoying the ride.
But once I found myself at home, after the worst (or at least most painful) part had passed and I was up walking again, and driving again and life returned more or less to normal…I started to descend into the funk. Yes, I was walking again, or perhaps the more appropriate word is limping. So no more day trips to explore little-known villages, no more 7km hikes through the woods with my dog in tow, no more yoga, no more wayfaring. And whats a Wayfarer to do when they can’t wayfare?!
This injury also meant that I was off work, as my part time job is physical and so requires a state of near perfect health and agility. Now, my part time job is what pays my bills and puts food on the table, its not my passion…so having time off from it should have delighted me, giving me the sort of time off that most people (myself included) only dream of. Time to work on passion projects and side hustles and while I have used the time to study my butt off, without the rhythm and routine of a job and a place to go everyday (and my job is not even a regular 9-5, Monday to Friday gig) I found myself adrift, getting bogged down in the miniature of day to day life.
And then, after my phone was stolen, I decided to go it ‘old school’ with an ancient Nokia I had lying around while I waited for the lasted smartphone to be released and to teach myself to disconnect a bit. But what I didn’t realise was that by not having a camera with me always in the form of a smartphone I was significantly hindering my creative expression. I realised that without the obvious inspirations of travel and wayfaring, my remaining inspiration was in the spontaneity of daily life and nature, whether it be human nature, animal nature or mother nature, and I didn’t have a camera to capture that.
My first attempt to pull myself out of this rut was to get organised. I had recently gone off to-do lists, but I thought it was time to bring them back….with little success. I am a goal oriented person, so being able to strike items off a to-do list usually gives me a certain sense of satisfaction. But it also lets me confuse busyness or productivity with worthiness, which isn’t a good thing. I am more than my to-do list. I am more than what I can get done in one day (especially when some of those to-do list items are 2 loads of washing and pick up dry cleaning).
And so I realised I needed to focus. Not on the tasks that needed to get done (of which there are many), but on myself. With this abundance of time on my hands and the removal of my job, my routine, my ability to wayfare and express myself creatively, is it any surprise I felt lost? Without the usual demands, both physical and mental, is it any surprise that my idle mind started attacking itself?
I made a commitment to up my sporadic meditation practice to a daily ritual. I started reading Brene Brown’s ‘Daring Greatly‘. I re-watched Gabby Bernstein’s Free 90 Minute Live webinar. I got up every morning, showered and got dressed to start each day with purpose (and get out of my pyjamas!). I signed up for an online Brush Calligraphy class I’ve been wanting to take for ages.
And slowly, step by step, these small things are pulling me out of that funk, out of the rut. By nurturing myself instead of getting caught up in all the things I’m suppose to do. All that stuff on the to-do list, it will get done sooner or later. But I realised that right now I have a unique opportunity to take care of myself. So thats what I’m going to do.