February, month 2 of our calendar year. The month that those New Year’s resolutions go to the forgotten graveyard. A study cited in People magazine shared that the average days that people stick to their New Year’s resolutions is a mere 36 days. Today is day 43 of the year 2021. According to that timeline the resolutions are gone and we are skipping happily forward as if they never happened. Or, perhaps, there is a feeling of guilt and shame that the resolution is too hard and, “I just can’t do it anymore. It’s not worth it”. Boy am I glad I didn’t make a resolution. This makes me neither worse or better than anyone else. We all make our own decisions and live with those consequences, good or bad. It is not for me judge anyone else. If you made a resolution and didn’t stick with it, don’t be too hard on yourself. It is ok to change your mind and just be the glorious loveable person you already are. But first, you have to be comfortable with who you are and what you want. I don’t have this all figured out for myself so I’m not going to say that the things I share in this post are guaranteed to work for everyone. I just hope that by sharing my story it will inspire others to take their own self-discovery journey and create their own story a life they deem to be well lived.
In my January blog post titled Goodbye & Thank you to 2020. Hello & Welcome to 2021 I declared that 2021 is my year of restoration. What I am learning is that rather than restoration being a destination, I am more interested in making this a self-discovery journey. There is no end goal in sight. This is perfectly fine. Oh sure, the “type A” perfectionist in me screams a little now and then that I’m not doing enough, there is no a step-by-step plan to follow, and there is no defined end point. I have to tell my inner voice, who I will refer to as “her” or “she” to “Shut the hell up” every once in awhile. I’ve learned that the key to silencing her is to simply tell her that this restoration journey doesn’t have an end point and if I truly want to heal emotionally, physically, and spiritually, I have to do the work. Here is a fairly typical conversation between the two of us.
Well then she scoffs, “What is the work?”
Me: “Beats me. I’m using the trial and error method this go around.”
Her: “You don’t have a plan. You’ll never feel whole or right.”
Me: “You’re right. I don’t have a plan. When was the last time one of your plans worked? Oh wait, that’s right. You had my life all planned out and how did that work out? I’ll consult you when I need you. Until then, leave me be.”
Silly to have a full on conversation in your own head, right? Wrong. This is just one of the conversations I have with myself. I learned from my counselor that sometimes we have to quiet our inner voice because it stems from our brain trying to protect us. You see, the amazing organ that our brain is will do many things to prevent us from being hurt. Most of the time this is helpful. However, when our brain goes in to overprotect mode it will sometimes be the cause of anxiety or fear. In order to maintain a healthy relationship with our own inner voice and brain we must sometimes set our own boundary by telling her, “Brain, thank you for working to protect me but I need to you stop. I get it. I realize there is a rough road ahead. We will be ok.” She is typically ok with this conversation but also has a boundary to declare, “Ok, I’ll let you have it your way but you don’t get to give up. You have to show me the work. We’ll talk again later.”
“Her” criticizing and questioning voice grows a bit dimmer every day. She’s learning that the space in my mind, heart, and soul for perfection with well-laid plans is slowly becoming overcrowded with grace, peace, and stillness moving in. I don’t want her voice to ever completely go away because when working in a normal mode she keeps me safe from harm and guides me with intuition. That’s perfectly normal. She’s just learning to cohabitate with her new roommates grace, peace, stillness. There’s one more roommate that has applied to live in this heart and soul. The new roommate’s name is “self-love” and I am happy to say that she has been approved to move in. There is light and love to be had for me, for you, for all of us. We just have to commit to doing the work and allowing that love to flow through our heart, mind, and soul.
Why am I sharing my personal story in a public space? Sharing my journey is a way of healing for me. I enjoy writing and hope that my story can be one of inspiration and hope. If you have had a tough year or are going through your own stormy season I want you to know that you are not alone.