I purposely made today’s quote a stretch to read. Maybe you had to lean in a bit, squint some to bring it into focus. That was my intention.
When my heart is empty, I wind up doing things I know better not to do or listening to people I know better not to listen to. I’m aware these things pull the wool over my eyes, but when I’m off-balance, I help pull the cap over my head, or I certainly do nothing to stop it.
It’s easy for me to get faked out when life is on overwhelm, especially with caregiving. Outside of that job (and sometimes because of that job), I wind up taking in too much of the wrong things. Things that are not fulfilling and void of nutritious sustenance – and I’m not necessarily talking about kale or a thick rib-eye steak. For me, my trigger is the awareness of my own mind spiraling me down the rabbit hole. And for a finite amount of time, I am faked out. My attention is diverted in order not to “deal,” including not dealing with the subtle rumblings of angst I’ve pushed down into the pit of my stomach.
But the angst always bubbles up. And that’s when I wave my tattered white flag and go sit in the corner. I get quiet, lean in and listen. The questions that recalibrate my heart are; Do I have something (else good) to do? Do I have something or someone to believe in? Do I have someone to love? Do I have something to hope for and dream? These questions make it simple and apparent to answer the question, ‘Am I growing or dying here?’
What Is True For Me: What is true for me are the conversations and time with friends who know me (and still like me.) Long, quiet drives and walks with the dogs. A dip in the lake. The gym and the Group Fitness classes I teach (with the dedicated, funny women who take my classes.) My mother. Good food and booze. Playing Bach, Bartok or Chopin. Any ski conditions. Air Races.
If I ever feel like any one of these things are out of reach, too far in the distance, or I don’t have time for them, that’s a good indication to take my finger off trigger, take out the magazine and put the gun down.