Sunday, May 4, 2014

to-do: GO. breathe. Go. Breathe. go. BREATHE.

i have a to-do list going constantly: i re-realized this when my facebook status included mention of it this morning. but technically, i have at least three to-do lists going simultaneously: in my head (immediate things), on my phone (kinda immediate things i'm afraid i might forget), and in my planner (for things a bit more long term). why so many lists? well, that'd be the fault of my brain. my brain really really really likes to be constantly active. i've traditionally had quite a hard time allowing myself to have time for play.

the more i practice at meditating and yoga, though, and the more reflective i get, the more i notice my mind letting go of its eternal need for busy-ness. that letting go process is scary though.

recently i started back in marathon training, doing a lot of 20-30 km runs with one of my friends. i've always loved long runs: they quiet my mind, they give me space, and they make me really skinny. (i don't want to like long runs for that last reason, but i know that i not-so-secretly love them purely for that reason.) recently, though, since i've been able to find quiet in other ways, and i've started to love and appreciate my not-scary-skinny body, i've found that I've started to become afraid of running.

now i find myself worried about the real reason for me going out to do a long run; about how my brain will react to my body if i lose any weight.

while i can identify this fear, i can't seem to shake it. i've been talking about it with a few friends, and this is what i've come to: my mind is better at breathing now, and it's starting to let up on the GO GO GO DO DO DO (OR ELSE!) mindset. yesterday on a run with one of my BFFs, i kept stopping to walk. not because i was tired or hurting, but because, well, i just didn't feel like running. and my mind wasn't crazily forcing me into it either.

and that's the part that is a little uncomfortable: me getting used to a mind that's not so demanding. i've lived so long with my self-termed "crazy mind" that living differently is actually scary. sometimes i find myself quite surprised that i'm ok with lounging in bed for the afternoon or going with a friend for a drive instead of crossing off another thing on my list.

"what happened to spring?" i wonder. and then i think, "wait. what was happening to spring for all those years before?!"

last week i went to a yoga class and kelli talked about "leaning into an uncomfortable feeling" rather than avoiding it. and, i sobbed. (yeah, yeah, i know, "but you always cry in yoga class, don't you spring?") i didn't know why i was crying last week though until the end of class. i realized that i was much better at feeling the crap i don't want to feel now... but i think those tears were mourning all of the years i spent avoiding my feelings; of listening to my crazy-mind and DOING and THINKING things to actively avoid feeling things.

feeling things gives me the vulnerability and self-awareness to be able to give my mind that space, to let it breathe, to take a break. this is the first week of the "mindful in may" challenge that i'm doing with a few friends: we committed to meditate every day. just a few days in and i notice the difference between meditating a few times a week and doing it every day. i was afraid it would be super hard, but a few minutes a day isn't really asking that much, especially now that my mind isn't quite so cray cray with its to-do lists.

so, included on today's revised to-do list?
1. relinquish a little more control,
2. let go of a little more,
3. align a little more with my dream-self,
4. experience THIS moment more fully.

oh, yeah, and...
5. breathe in.
6. breathe out.
7. breathe in.
8. breathe out.

yeah, that feels doable.

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