Have you ever had your body just tell you to stop? DO NOT PASS GO. QUIT IT. YA BASTA!
Maybe it came through an external expression like an accident. Or maybe through an internal break-check like illness.
These are the most common ways most of us receive the info to slow down…we usually need a huge hulking sign to just step right in front of us as we come slamming to a halt into it. OOOOF.
Here’s the thing though. Before you got smacked down, your body was likely giving you a ton of cues to pause. Feelings and sensations in the body. Thoughts like, “Gosh, I’m so tired of this, I really need a break.”
But like so many of us, you ignored those cues.
Why? Because your mind (rife with old programming) was overriding your body. Your ego probably piped up and said something like “Hey, we can’t stop because there’s so much to do! It’s weak to need to rest. You can’t have what you really want if you slow down.” Or something like that, amiright?
Thoughts are the language of the brain. Feelings are the language of the body.
Our culture, for the most part, teaches us that our bodies are just transportation devices for our brains. And the body? Meh, make it look good (whatever that means) and feel good enough to keep pushing forward.
Get your ego up in the mix* and it can be hard to subvert the programming that you should push your feelings down and forge ahead to achieve everything before you rest.
And even when you’re living your best life, doing your most purposeful and sacred work, connecting with the divine source within on-the-regularrrrr, and cultivating the most generous and loving relationships, you are susceptible to the hustle-lie. Because we’re all swimming in the programming.
Or shit, maybe you don’t know/remember how to read the cues (the sensations/feelings/thoughts) because you’ve spent your lifetime pushing them down.
Welcome to the club! The world has certainly supported you in not listening to yourself…and when you don’t, someone else likely benefits.
But OH, THE COST.
After my last course launch, I paused. I was having a hard time being present. My nervous system needed tending and I couldn’t do it while constantly checking/sharing on instagram and scanning my emails compulsively.
So, I put my phone down and dove into some practices that embrace my nervous system and support me in my capacity for real healing.
I swam in the ocean and rivers, cackled wildly with girlfriends, ate and cooked gorgeously fresh food, wandered through jungle and redwood forests, adventured in my favorite places in the world, took walks under the moon, delicious sex, started writing a book, read 3 books, sewing projects with my auntie, made space to look at my big picture, our big picture, deep and sweet convos with friends and family, watched my fave 80s movies on VHS (including Lost Boys, Working Girl, Look Who’s Talking < my husb’s pick), fondled soooo many plants, and more.
I didn’t have to burn out or get sick this time. I didn’t need some disaster to happen to know I needed a slowdown. One day I opened instagram and just felt a big ol’ NOT TODAY SATAN vibe from my gut and closed the app. It took a month before I felt the go-ahead to engage again.
My body and mind felt synced and satisfied with my space-taking. Mostly.
I certainly got a few blips of feeling guilty (ugh, most useless emotion) like I wasn’t showing up how “I should”…like I wasn’t caring enough for others because I wasn’t sharing and engaging constantly.
Here’s the thing though, my cup is refilled. And it feels goooooood. I know that I can’t do anything for you, for me, for us, unless it is.
Yes, I’m here for world peace. For collective liberation and our magnificent evolution. And my #1 commitment has my cup. It has to be because I cannot serve, YOU CANNOT SERVE, when we have nothing to give.
- Are you your #1?
- If not, why not? And when you investigate that “why not”, I invite you to look at whose voice is telling you that you’re not as important as someone else.
- Is your cup empty?
- Have you been receiving messages from your inner guidance (or hell, your trusted community) to slow down?
- Do you think you’re really serving your vision when you’re ignoring your own needs, desires, guidance?
- What is worth more than your connection to yourself?
- How much longer can you go on like this?
The world doesn’t need our dregs, our bottom of the barrel, our bare minimum, our burnout (um, she told me, so I know this for sure).
The world needs our brilliance, our authenticity, our love, our tenderness, our ferocity.
I’m here for profound stability in a completely unstable world. For stability that is flowing, compassionate, liberatory, and sometimes a quiet exchange with the earth and no one else.
*Dr. Wayne Dyer called ego “edging god out”…its realm is the unconscious mind.
image by Lance Gerber for Desert Magazine of the Joshua Tree House