We often read journal articles or "wellness warrior" blogs that emphasize taking time to nourish the soul and manifest the magical life you've always wanted. I would need several more hands to count the number of blogs, status updates or Instagram photos that encourage this. It's great advice, and I do think the importance of it is essential for growth and happiness. But....am I the only one that seems to shout back, "Easy for you to say!" Most of that guidance is coming from someone who has already stepped through the doorway to the amazing life they've always wanted, and in most cases, can more easily manage taking time off to recoup and rejuvenate. To their credit, many have come a long way, once being in a place where that very movement seemed impossible. The ease (or unease) at which we all manifest our truth and happiness is relative. Each person struggles in different ways and with various obstacles. It is easy for someone who's been "through the doorway" to say it, because they did it, and they want the rest of the world to feel the same joy.
What I haven't seen much of is HOW to do it. I know for certain it's more emotionally challenging to get somewhere, when you are starting from a low-point. How can we spend time nourishing our self enough, while working a full time job or living a life without much flexibility! Most of our work schedules and daily routines demands 90% of our awake-time. What if we can't take off and go surfing for two weeks? What if we can't even take off time in our own house for two weeks? How do we revive the soul and feed our hungry creativity monsters if we don't have the time or money resources? Is it just as effective to meditate on our kitchen floor as it is on the edge of an endless beach or on the top of an abandoned mountain overhang? When was the last time you saw a magazine photo of someone meditating in a boring "normal" day-to-day location?
I want to know how to feel my life become magical around me right now, on the daily!
1. Schedule the time.
It's become very ritualistic for our society to work hard for long stretches of time, and then take a decent-length vacation. That works for many of us because knowing the vacation is near provides increased motivation and drive to work diligently through a designated time-period. Personally (and I say this with no hesitation), I need a vacation after five work days! Saturday and Sunday just aren't enough, especially since those are mostly the same days many other people are taking a break. Those who love to work 80 hours a week may argue with me, but I stick to my guns when I say five days of work and two days of errands and "catch-up" is taxing (especially if you don't have a job you absolutely love). My motivation and creative "juices" are rockin' and rollin' in the morning and early afternoons, smack dab in the middle of a busy work day! Just like keeping a grudge, my inability to release this energy only builds up inside, until I just about go postal and break down, "I NEED A VACATION". I absolutely hate the way I feel once I've gotten to that point. We need to release slowly, like a pressure valve, each day, or at least a few days a week. Actively scheduling a time, or even just allowing a few moments to switch gears can be enough throughout the week to help ease the buildup of pressure.
Thinking about something is almost the same thing as not doing it. A quote from Marie Forleo, "Clarity comes from engagement, not thought." You have to actually take steps toward making something happen for it to count.
Make it count! Schedule a few moments (or hours if you have it) each day massaging your creativity, or just doing something that heightens your inner truth. You will notice over time, those small and consistent actions will add up to something very big and fullfilling.
2. Keep a journal or try Evernote
Evernote has been my daily creative notepad. I keep it close, either as one of the many tabs I have going on an internet browser (yes, at work), or on my cell phone. When I have an idea or creative burst, I quickly and quietly jot it into Evernote. Unfortunately there isn't time to fully immerse myself in it, but it's a way to keep the idea alive until I'm free to come back to it. It's not perfect, but it works. Journaling follows the same concept, except it's not digital. However, writing in a journal embraces a more artistic and raw approach. Evernote can feel a little bit exposed, since it is on the internet and all. But writing in a journal is more private, almost like keeping a diary. No one will know what magical plans you having brewing in your work bag...!
3. Try to integrate your passions into your work
I'll use myself as an example. I'm a scientist. I work with data, interpret models and build products. Nowhere in my work-life do I have the chance to use creativity or express my deeper passions for art, writing and yoga. What I've tried to do is integrate as much of my inner-self as I can with my job. Asking to be involved in more company writing, or offering to design a new webpage, are just a couple ways I've tried to bring light to my strengths and desires.
4. Take a sick day, and don't feel guilty about it
I've done this, more than once. And honestly, I'm not shy about it. Just take a sick day, for your own mental health and sanity. No one wants to be around you if you are spiraling down the rabbit hole and breaking apart into tiny insignificant pieces. You're not feeling 100%, and it's okay to use that as a sick day to recover and "revive". Finish the craft you were working on, whether a writing or piece of art. Take a nap, read a book, cook something delicious. Here's another reason (something my dad often reminds me of): your employer is not looking out for you. You are the only one looking out for you. If it needs to be done, just do it!
Hello, I'm Julie.
Discover the wisdom of yoga and how it can bring nourishment, well-being and a deeper connection to all aspects of your life.