Self Care From the Trenches to the Sky

September 9 Hi everyone!  I am in Whistler, Canada where I am about to start a conference on Integral Theory and how it relates to group facilitation.  As you may have noticed, I have been traveling a lot of late but this conference was too important to pass up.

So I woke up early early yesterday morning and boarded yet another plane.  I had some high hopes for how I would find the cutest, light-filled coffee shop in Vancouver to write up an important blog post that I would send to you all today.  I'd look put-together, sip my drink and do the work I love to do most--connect with you all over authentic self care.

Beautiful fantasy right? Here is what really happened...

1.  After poking around in wonderful restaurants and stores (there's a whole zero waste store!), I found the light-filled coffee shop.  But I decided to read my book and post on Instagram instead of writing the blog post.  It would happen later I told myself.

2.  In a slight choice paralysis moment, I ordered a beautiful drink that didn't make me feel good as I sipped it.  So I left most of it behind and dealt with my guilt about not finishing what I ordered (for me, an important part of eating consciously is letting go of food when it's not the right choice).

3.  I certainly didn't feel put together as I lugged my bags around the city on very little sleep.  But I did enjoy seeing all the beautiful people who did!  Vancouver is really stylish in a fun, non pretentious way.

4.  By the time I got on my bus for Whistler, I felt like a real mess.  Despite the being surrounded by one of the more beautiful views I've seen, the sh*tty voice in my head came alive.  Being too tired always gives it a big opening to come in.

5.  For a while I tried to fight the voice with affirmations.  Then I tried threats.  It got stronger and told me meaner things.

6.  I took note of my situation and realized there were two actions available to me in the moment:  drinking water and breathing deeply.  I did both of those.

7. Those actions helped me remember the power of surrendering to what is, even when it's sh*tty.  So I did that. I watched the beautiful view and listened the horrible voice and even giggled at the dichotomy.  It was just what was happening.  I held it all as one experience.

8.  I finally got to the beautiful center and decided to skip the big, drool-worthy buffet and had a lighter dinner of poached pears and mint tea.  There would be more food tomorrow and I know a heavy stomach doesn't lead to good sleep. Finally in my room, I took a long shower and collapsed into bed.

9.  I woke up this morning feeling like a human being again.  I always do after good sleep. I drank hot water, did restorative yoga and put my things away.  My morning routine always makes me feel better.

10.  I realized I hadn't insightful, important blog post yet.  Instead of skipping it--which the sh*tty voice told me was the best option because it wouldn't be perfect--I though this list would be enough.  It's my best in this moment and the cool thing is that my best is always good enough as long as I show up and stay conscious.  Yours is too.  We are in this together.  We are a mess and we are beautiful.  We are in the sky and in the trenches.  We are living our lives!

(In that spirit, please excuse that I didn't add in links or correct typos--the conference is starting and I need to push send. Life! Muah!)