So, my god, we’re already well into September. There’s only like, 4 months until 2018. This year is becoming a memory RIGHT before our very eyes. Now is the time to take a mid-year time out and look at how we’ve been doing. Are we in a place to finish the year off strong? Are we centered, or swept up in distractions?
It’s become ridiculously easy to be consumed by the chaos / emotions in our day-to-day environments and on social media. It’s also become easy to shun it in the name of being focused on our own individual goals. And ultimately, neither extreme is helpful. We need to find balance between both to be centered, present, productive – ultimately, able to show up when we need to. 2017 has truly been a invitation for all of us to find that balance.
I love what Gracy Obuchowicz’s said about self-care: Self-care alone is not enough. You need to have self-awareness too. Self-care plus self-awareness equals self-love.” To me, this is, simply, what it means to stay centered in the midst of the whirlwinds around us; to know when it’s time to focus on us, and then it’s time to check ourselves and focus on listening to others. The way I see it, this is how we become a part of the forward momentum we want to see in our own lives and the world.
I thought about this when I revisited some goals I wrote down at the very start of 2017 and saw that I haven’t accomplished any of them. Not even close. And I didn’t feel bad. Looking at them I realized it wasn’t because I’ve been slacking, but because somewhere along the line I gradually began to see that those goals weren’t priorities. They were basic things I could easily accomplish (quit this daily habit, start this other daily habit) and looking at them now, they seem really arbitrary.
Everything about this year called me to pay attention not so much to my mind, but my intuition, to listen to others without impulsive action or judgement, and check my own thoughts around both. Wtf did I think accomplishing all these goals was really important? I couldn’t deny how obvious it was, nine months after I made them, that they just weren’t. I happily committed to abandoning them, and reoriented toward a way simpler, and more real goal. Being centered.
Here are 7 ways to incorporate more self-care and self-awareness into your life:
- Find news sources and media you can rely on and trust. Some of my favourites include Bitch Media, The Establishment, Refinery29. Feedly them.
- Journalling as a daily practice is one of my favourite ways to articulate and release stale beliefs. It’s helpful for staying out of your head and churning emotions and negative thoughts around and around, like a daily self-reality check.
- Pay close attention to feelings like FOMO, self-comparison, and listlessness. Know that these are distractions, and there is literally no point or reason to waste time on them.
- Connect with nature regularly. Nothing is as clearing for the mind as being around a bunch of trees and no people. Whether you lay in the grass in the middle of High Park without your phone, or surround yourself with crystals, staying close to mama earth is v. grounding.
- Commune with your local teens. They grew up with 24/7 access to world-wide information, and were prompted to think about how to change the world. They are strong, and they may well save us all.
- Find creative ways to give of yourself. Your time, your energy, your money.
- Adopt boss role models who DGAF, like Celine Dion, and allow them to inspire you when it comes to: answering stupid questions and responding to bad juju.