Tomorrow is the day many return to work and school after enjoying time off from the hustle and bustle. This morning, as I woke up late, spent some time stretching and meditating, did some gardening, and prepared some art materials, I was very aware of how relaxed and calm I was. It took me a solid week of doing absolutely nothing to get to this place. Then, after that week, I spent many days preparing for work (I teach, so…), while preparing, and doing more nothing. That is two weeks of preparation to feel calm and at total peace.
I’m taking this as a lesson. I’ve allowed myself to be so busy, so stressed out at all times, that it took me two weeks to recover. That should not be. Life should not be a roller coaster of stress and recovery. However, it has been because I have allowed it to be. Additionally, if I continue down the same path, with the same habits and behaviors, life will continue on as it always has. I’ll be right back to getting through minute by minute, day by day, until my body crashes and the emotional and physical turmoil, that come with that sort of crash, return.
This is exactly where I do not want to be, and I am sure that I’m not alone. But how do we correct that? Well, for starters, we go back to our intentions. What is it we want to see in our life and how can we get there?
Remember, intentions are not goals. It’s like going on a diet. We all know, at this point, that certain diet practices are not sustainable. They get the job done, but then again we crash because we cannot maintain them for long periods of time. A diet – to lose a certain amount of weight – is a goal.
An intention is to live a healthy lifestyle, make better food choices, move more, and so on. It is a lifestyle change that takes time and practice. It may not be easy at first, but do not count yourself as a failure. Each day is a new start; each hour even. If my intention is to take time each morning to stretch and meditate so that I’m relaxed and prepared for my workday, but I don’t wake up in time and am rushing to work, I cannot count it as a failure. If I do, I may give up because it is too difficult. Instead, I will make time on a break or at lunch to do what I missed in the morning, because I know that it is healthy for me to do so. My intention is to take that time and not get wrapped up in the chaos of the day. My intention is to take time for me because I know it is good for my mental health and happiness.
So, as you move into your work week, don’t get lost in the “have to dos.” Make time for the things that truly matter. Because at the end of the day, we should feel good about waking up the next morning.