As I said last blog this holiday has been a great opportunity to rest and recharge. I have been very busy of late, with my mum and her passing and getting things organised to go away. This stressed ‘busy bee’ is not who I want to be! I had a great pre-holiday reminder of this on my way to the airport.
Friends of ours came down to stay in our house while we have been away. They kindly drove us to the airport. My friend had watched the pair of us run around madly preparing for the holiday and finishing things off before we went. Ironically, although I didn’t see it at the time, the last thing I did as we were driving to the airport was to post last fortnights blog which was on amongst other things taking time to rest and not be so busy. Kindly my friend pointed out the irony and mismatch in my behaviour and the blog advice I was sharing.
I immediately felt the prickle as my ‘busy bee’ button was pushed. Why was I feeling so reactive? Time for some curiosity and kind exploration about what is under my addictive need to be busy.
Mistakenly in the past I saw my busyness as a badge of honour somehow. I am much more aware of this misunderstanding these days and have been more aware of discerning between ego driven busyness and wisely directed activity. However, clearly its often very handy to have a helpful reminder.
I often justify my busyness as activity which is productive and meaningful. More often than not these days this is true. However, if I am honest there are times when this is not the case and my busyness is an avoidance or addictive behaviour which creates stress and disconnection.
The times when I am in synch are those when I am tuned into my wise self and letting her take the lead. These are times when I enjoy what I am doing, take rests and things seem less effort and more fun. I feel aligned and ‘on purpose’.
However, there are many times I am in service not to my wise self but instead to my ‘task master’ ego. This activity is different – its stressful and addictive. It often has a ‘I’ll just get x, y, and z done and then I will take a rest and relax (and I seldom do because there is always one more thing to do) soundtrack’. And it often have high expectations too, with little tolerance for slip ups or mistakes. This often leaves me tired and resentful. So enough of listening to that.
I have been pondering (with curiosity and compassion) the idea that my ‘busy bee’ activity is my attempt to coverup feelings I don’t want to feel. Maybe, I somehow use the busyness to numb or avoid feelings. I am aware also of my compulsion to fill the gap that the loss of my Mum has created.
So instead, I am trying to notice the urge to flip into ‘busy bee’ mode and trust and wait. Instead, I am looking with kindness and curiosity at what is behind my compulsion to act. For me I think I don’t want to accept or acknowledge the parts of me that are lazy, unworthy, uncaring or selfish. I find it difficult to accept these parts of me and so instead I think I numb them with busyness.
More curious exploration needed with my journal. As Kim McMillan says 'When I loved myself enough, I began pouring my feelings into my journals. These loving companions speak my language. No translation needed'.
The cost of my compulsive busy behaviour is a disconnection, both with my wise self and with others too. It is not selfish or uncaring to look after myself, so I need to tune into that truth. As Gandhi says 'above all do not forget your duty to love yourself'.
So the things I would like to remember to take home from my time of rest, relaxation and 'spiritual maintenance' include.......
1. Connecting with my wise self
As I said last blog, this connection with my wise self is so important and well worth the time and effort to strengthen and trust. This is the simple meditation I have been sharing in yoga. I have been practicing this on the go too.
Be Aware of the unsettling feeling and the urge to ‘busy bee’.
Take some down time to and relax recharge, so I can continue to be the positive force in the world I want to be.
3. Act from love
Do as Meggan Watterson advises and 'take action when what is moving you is love at the heart'.
Do as Gandhi advises and 'In doing something, do it with love or never do it at all'. This reminds me to set kind, realistic boundaries around what I can commit to do. And that this means saying 'no' sometimes.
4. Embrace Country Pace
'Slow and steady' as the hare and tortoise remind me.
I have been enjoying not being so dependent on my phone and have taken this time to do a little technology detox.
5. Be patient
Patience both with myself and others. What's the rush. My patience mantras 'No need to rush,I have plenty of time' and ''Trust and wait'.
6. Do more of what brings me joy
I know I am 'on purpose' when activity is fun and joyful - so more of that please.
7. Take a shavassana - enjoy a 5 minute lie on the couch :)
So as I spend the morning here relaxingly finishing this blog I am reminding myself to keep this relaxed mindset both on our way home and at home. I am going to do my best to be aware of the urge to rush and stress and instead move at a relaxed, steady pace free of busyness stress and striving!
I will check in with my body and wise guide at the heart often for what is needed. When I listen I am sure she will be telling me to continue to embrace country pace, trust and wait and to embrace uncertainty too. Please remind me if you see me in stressed 'busy bee' mode. I'll be very grateful.
With love, appreciation and very best well wishes to us all