I have written about vulnerability, succeeding in spite of your fears, and how important it is to have the mindset that “reality is our friend.” I haven’t actually talked about how I do this IRL (in real life).
Keeping Shit Real
It’s time for me to be vulnerable and share some of the stuff I fixate on, worry about, and lose sleep over–my “gremlins” as Rachelle Mee-Chapman likes to call them. I am just like you. I have fears, oh do I have fears. I suffer daily from an anxiety disorder, I am a step-mom half the time (frack me, it’s no walk in the park), I am a graduate school drop out, and my parents are divorcing after thirty years. I also come from a long line of alcoholics, and a have close family member who has attempted to take her own life several times in the past few years–each time jarring my internal world. So in spite of my shiny happy disposition, shit is real around here.
But people say, “you have such a great marriage,” “I’d kill to have that.” It’s true. I married a dude who also happens to be pretty fucking cool as husbands go. But my past still haunts me from time to time. It tells me that although things have been awesome thus far, the other shoe is bound to drop at some point.
This. is. my. reality. These are the “gremlins” I have to keep in check. If I don’t stay balanced and take care of myself, they pretend like the parents are out of town for the weekend and they party so hard that I wake up with a giant Hiroshima-sized headache. If I don’t do that “self-care” thing, I get pummeled. The light in my eyes flickers out and I have to answer to Eric who will ask me about ten times a day, “Are you doing ok?” It gets pretty fracking annoying, and usually causes me to sign-up on the spot for a yoga class, or at least take a walk.
I’d like to think that I manage it pretty well, on average. I am on medication for anxiety, I have spent years in therapy, and I play indoor soccer. I hang out with like-minds, and have a good cry (release) every few months, or when my period shows up. But I can also swing the pendulum the other way and beat myself up, eat too much, and sleep too long. I can “escape” to my special place–I’m pretty sure that is one of my super powers, btw. I can also beat myself up emotionally and get over-perfectionistic to the point that it paralyzes me.
Below is a visualization of the three step process for how I deal with stuff the WRONG WAY!
Step 1: Get overwhelmed. Take a nap.
Step 2: Go into denial, take another nap.
Step 3: Eat, consume alcoholic beverage, shop online, externalize, go back to sleep.
When You Have Gone Too Long Without a Good Plan For Self-care
One of the unhealthy ways that I try to squash my anxiety is to over-eat. Over the past few months I have realized that I have gained quite a bit of weight from all of the emotional eating. The reason I know, is not because I got on a scale. I don’t do that, this would just result in more obsessing. I can tell because when I sprint across the indoor soccer field my belly jiggles. I know because I haven’t looked at myself in a full mirror naked in 3 years. Why? Because why would I? I know I am out of shape. Plus, I am really good at going to that “special place,” where it doesn’t matter. What makes it worse, is that my husband doesn’t care. He thinks I look fine. What this tells me is not that I’m fat or lazy, it tells me that I need to take my self-care more seriously. I’ve let myself go too long without a consistent plan for self-care.
This week I started Bikram yoga again after a yearlong break. Not to lose weight, but to get more balanced. Not that I would complain if I lost some weight. It was so effing hard. I found myself trying to think up Jedi mind tricks to get through the 90 mins. That’s why I both love it and hate it. It works my entire body in a gentle, yet firm way. And the accomplishment of getting through the class makes you feel like you just won the whole Internet. The sweat reminds me of the days when I played soccer in college. The weeks of double-days, where just getting through a practice was hard enough. Then we had to come back and do it again in the afternoon. Fuck me! The difference is that I am not banged up after yoga. I already love my body more, and I haven’t lost a pound. I don’t have to sit in an ice bath to keep my knee from swelling up. And, I learn to breathe.
Bikram is all about breathing. The thought goes that if you learn to breathe through the difficult poses in a 100 degree room, then you will be able to breathe through anything that life throws at you. And the instructors, they are strict. They lock the door, and there is pretty much an unspoken rule that if you leave in the middle of the class, you can’t come back in. Bikram yoga is what I want to be to my clients. I want my services to give them the structure that they need to succeed. I want them to feel like the process of coaching is a mode of self-care, that is tough enough to train them to succeed in all parts of their life.
Committing to self-care is difficult for me. One, because I am cheap. No, I really am. I don’t like spending money on myself. Yoga is expensive. Another reason is that each class is 90 mins. and then I have to take a shower because I smell like “onions” afterwards. So with the drive time included, it is over 2 hours out of my day. That just took my work day from an 8 hour day to a 6 hour day, instantly. Plus, it hurts. But it is oh so worth it. I feel brighter about life, less inclined to go back to my old methods of coping. The benefits are endless. But I guarantee that I will stop doing it, if I don’t commit to it.
Sign on the dotted Line
So, I am committing on my blog to go to Bikram 3x a week for three months! Feel free to ask me about it! This is how we stay accountable, giving others the right to call us out. So I tweeted it! I am telling Mr. Ashley Jennings tonight when I get home, and I have told the blogosphere about it! I have also put the class times in my calendar and blocked them out, so that I can’t have that excuse.
Enough about me, how about you?
What do you do for self-care? Are you still in the (totally bogus and out of balance) mind-set that you have to work endless number of hours to succeed with your business?
Are you falling apart at the seams, but you are afraid to pay for a class because you feel guilty that you aren’t putting that into your business?
Are you with me? ARE YOU WITH ME? Leave me a comment in the comments section if you are. Tell me what your plan is. In case you got to the bottom of this and still don’t think you need one, YOU DO! This is just as important as your business plan. More important!
Love and peace to you on your journey!