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Out from Under

This week a passage that my yoga teacher read from The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo spoke to me. The reading is as follows:

Sometimes there’s just too much to consider, too much to understand and analyze, too many consequences to play out in our mind, too many things to clean, unpack, or repair before we can go out and play.

Sometimes the simplest and best use of our will is to drop it all and just walk out from under everything that is covering us, even if only for an hour or so – just walk out from under the webs we’ve spun, the tasks we’ve assumed, the problems we have to solve. They’ll be there when we get back, and maybe some of them will fall apart without our worry to hold them up. Wouldn’t that be nice?

As I sat in the backyard earlier today looking at the weeds that I should pull and the fence that needs to be fixed, and feeling guilty that I wasn’t out training for the triathlon I’m signed up to participate in later this month, and paralyzed by the thought of all the things I could be doing to grow my business; I came back to this passage.

I’ve always been what people would call “type A.” Even as a teenager, I took on a lot of responsibilities and worked hard at everything I did. I often took work and these self-imposed responsibilities seriously – sometimes too seriously. I’m also naturally analytical, and tend to overthink situations most of the time. There is light and darkness to everything. The light is that I’m highly self-motivated and have many achievements of which I’m proud. The dark is the stress that I’ve caused for myself and the impact to my health – while not necessarily medically proven, there’s not a doubt in my mind that my level of stress contributed to my heart attack five years ago.

I’ve changed a lot in the past five years. I’ve lightened up and gained some perspective. I don’t take everything so seriously anymore. However, I need to be reminded from time to time to “walk out from under” all of these tasks I’ve assumed, and let them fall away. So instead of pulling weeds, riding my bike, or writing an advertisement for my business, I met my friend for a pedicure. My feet needed the TLC, but not nearly as badly as my soul needed quality time with someone who inspires and reenergizes me. It was the best decision for me in that moment, and indeed had the effect that I suspected it would, I came home to blog and organize myself for a productive week.


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