getting a new vision, knowing when to quit, lighten up your spiritual practice, spiritual bankruptcy, spiritual practice fatigue, taking the pressure off your spiritual practice, using creative visualization
“I can’t figure out what’s going on in my life.” The caller was irritable. “I normally have so much to do, but I just feel kind of…empty. What do you think I should do next?” she asked the radio show host. Her voice accelerated. She became frantic. “What do I do? What am I supposed to be doing?!”
Her voice cracked when she mentioned her children’s high school activities. They were busier than ever, but she had more and more time on her hands. Clearly she just needed a new project?
In the August series, Not Feeling It, we’ve looked at overwhelm and exhaustion. It’s more popular to admit that you’re endlessly busy than at the end of your rope. We pride ourselves on going days with minimal sleep. Working longer hours than anyone else in the office. Maintaining a lifestyle where healthy food is optional while our phone is mandatory.
Focusing on self-care is only a start. Burn-out is usually the tip of the iceberg for something that can’t be repaired by your favorite cup of tea or a long weekend.
Before you groan, “Oh, no – here’s one more thing I have to fix!” perhaps you can flip your perspective. Irritation is intuition whispering, “Now’s your chance to change.” The people we’ve met in this series got the message:
Peggy Cappy’s yoga student came to grips with her workaholism in Keep it Loose. She healed the burden of perfectionism that was slowly turning her into a stone man.
In You Need To Daydream, we explored the dangers of technology addiction. Allowing yourself to daydream means letting go of the need for certainty. Like the actors in “Birdman”, you may have a few false starts learning what your new vision is really about.
It would be easy to emphasize the stops and starts of Ina Garten’s career in I Declare Bankruptcy. However, the real story is about admitting mistakes and adapting. Pride and embarrassment can be terrible burdens, making it almost impossible to move on.
The caller asking “What should I be doing?” is on the right track, even if it’s a little rocky at the moment. She is resisting downtime, and yet it’s just what she needs to reinvent herself after years of the same routines. Her former sweet spot of “My schedule is slammed doing things for everyone else”? It’s time to kick that false belief to the curb.
Consider where you have an opportunity for healing. Fall is on its way. Are you going to harvest resentment or wholeness? Will you find a way to shift insecurity to contentment? Could you close this year with a new vision, or are you going to stay entrenched in the same bad habits?
This is the week for you to have a personal “I’m not feeling it” moment, and you may need to say it with gusto. Start small or go big, but before we start September, say “See ya!”, “Sayonara!” and “Hit the road, Jack!” to anything depleting you. Why wait another minute? Now’s your chance.