Have you noticed this cycle in your life – maybe it’s just me? – working very hard, pushing through, nose to the grindstone, knowing that soon, just up ahead, on the horizon there is a vacation. A little light at the end of the tunnel on the to-do list of life.
And then you arrive on vacation in a lovely spot (which by the way has no Wifi a small curse and miracle) and find yourself in a twisted yoga pose with the lovely waves in the background while you are plotting and scheming in your head about either:
a. How to change your entire life in order to stay in this tropical location forever (big plans of buying a retreat center, who you will hire, how to inform family members you will not be coming back, do you sell everything and start over? How much does it cost to ship stuff? Would the dog need to be quarantined? How do you earn money while working in Mexico, do you have to pay taxes on that? Could I really live in this heat full time?)
b. How can you can change your entire life when you get back. (My schedule is not conducive to a healthy lifestyle, how can I cut back my work hours to do more yoga? Can I take a day off per week and still pay the mortgage? And what about that novel I have been planning to write since I was 5? When am I going to do that? And will it sell? What section of the bookstore would they carry it in? Or should it be an e-book?)
This was me, relaxing! On vacation, at a lovely week-long yoga retreat in Mexico, recovering from a particularly intense 8 months of running non-stop.
As you can see, my mind is never at rest. This driver inside, the one who needs to achieve, accomplish, be the best, never stops. It’s my biggest challenge, to tame that inner voice that constantly cajoles me to do more, be better, try harder, get it all figured out.
It wasn’t until day 7 after a relaxing massage that I sat down at the beach, closed my eyes and shut out the noise in my head.
“Maybe” I said to myself, “Just maybe what I need to do is stop striving to get somewhere and focus instead on taking care of this body which will hopefully last me a few more decades and listen to my heart which is yearning for some sort of creative fulfillment. And if I simply do that, maybe the rest will take care of itself.”
I took in a deep breath, anchoring my intention with the Universe, opened my eyes, and there in front of me was a baby whale, jumping and spinning in the Pacific Ocean. I felt like the Universe had heard my solemn oath and responded in kind.
It took 7 days but I finally got it. I was able to leave without the usual anxiety of the future, the need to figure out what’s next, or upend my entire life. What remained was a feeling of peace in my heart to carry back home and share with all of you!