When You Don’t Practice What You Preach

I feel a bit like I am walking around a fun house with mirrors on every wall. Except it’s not fun. It’s my life, and I am overwhelmed. At this point, as I look into the mirrors and see every possible direction’s reflection, I just sit down. I cross my legs. I close my eyes. I breathe. Why isn’t it getting any easier? Why won’t any step I take move me forward, away from the overwhelm?

One thing happened, and I said, “Oh, I’ve got this.” Then another happened, then another. In a matter of weeks my work situation, living situation, relationship status, and my body’s well-being entered into limbo. It’s been this way for over a month now. Needless to say, this summer to fall transition has been extra challenging to navigate. I have tried to listen to my body, journal, and meditate, but I admit I am easily frustrated when I don’t get the results I want right away. I don’t make the routine a priority.

So here I’ve been, stirring in my discomfort, complaining that it won’t end, and every thing is too much. And then today I encountered a couple of perspective shifts.

As I rode the bus to spend the remainder of my weekend at work, I saw the Daily Calm for today, and it featured a Zen Proverb that read,

“Obstacles do not block the path, they are the path.”

Pause.
Reread.

And it’s true. Life is the constant overcoming of obstacles. Some seem larger than others, but they are always there. And perspective is everything. Thinking back to six months ago, life forced me into a similar season of dramatic change. It was painful, but it helped me stay present, connect with my heart, and grow abundantly. Again, I have an opportunity to practice what I learned this year and continue to grow through obstacles.

Here I remind myself of the hope of my pursuits: to be warm in heart and calm in mind at all times. This morning, as I walked with a friend, coffee in hand, he reminded me that yes, everything seems to be blowing up,

but I have my friends.
I have my family.
And everyone is healthy.
Pause.
Breathe.
Gratitude.

and this helps me feel warm in heart.

So I stand up in this room full of mirrors and take a few steps, breathe, look down at my feet and remember that yes, I am here right now. This circumstance is challenging, but I am present in the moment. I choose to practice awareness, and to place the other concerns I have in containers in my mind, and set them aside, one by one, for later. I take each moment as it comes, consciously release my worries, and replace them with gratitude and presence.

and this helps me feel calm in mind.

Moment.
Awareness.
Breath.
Release.
Presence.

Life is full of wonder, of beauty, and of love. Remember what makes your heart full and warm, and your mind clear and calm. Pause on those memories. Cherish them.

3 Comments

  1. Beautiful writing and what a wonderful message! I love the distinction between caring for your heart vs. caring for your mind. That is SO helpful! I needed this post this morning.

    Liked by 1 person

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