Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Telling a New Story

I sat down to write about how overwhelmed I was with everything that's on my plate. I thought that if I wrote it all out, it would somehow leave that part of my brain where everything spins like a squeaky hamster wheel, and take all the accompanying anxiety with it.

Well, my plans were foiled. When I opened my journal, I saw the end of the last entry I had made only two days prior. It went something like this: "I am loving watching my life unfold with such ease and beauty. Everything is just coming together, with very little effort and so many joyous moments of serendipity."

What has changed in the last two days? I asked myself. The answer? Nothing. Nothing, that is, but my perspective. In a moment of weakness, I had succumbed to the temptation to believe that I should be accomplishing all-the-things, and all-the-things should be perfectly executed. (Thanks, social media).

By choosing to believe that falsehood, however briefly, I threw myself into a downward spiral and ran to my journal to vent. Upon seeing my last entry it dawned on me:

When I am overwhelmed, I am putting myself in a position of powerlessness. I am, in essence, choosing to let my circumstances dictate how I feel about my life. In this case, I was giving my "to-do" list power over my sense of well-being.

That power has now returned to it's rightful owner: me. How? I chose to see my list of all-the-things as opportunities and ideas to pursue from a good-feeling place. It has become a rough guide, not a task master. A reminder of all the beautiful things unfolding in my life, not a dictator that controls my daily experience.

In other words, I began to tell myself a new story. The characters and the plot have not changed. But the tone of the story has undergone a metamorphosis simply by altering my perspective.

From this place, from this stronger stance, I am empowered, and once again in control of my experience, rather than a "victim to my circumstances".

Even in this place of empowerment, I gave into the temptation yet again another two days later. I saw someone who is embodying the true essence of what it means to be wild and free. I felt envious. I wondered if I was doing something wrong, and how I could change it. (Thanks again, social media).

Before I dove head first into that shame-spiral, I realised that I was making a choice to feel something other than wild and free. I was holding up a mirror that did not reflect who I really am. A mirror that told me lies. I was changing my story.

Can I choose to be wild and free in my daily experience? I asked myself. The answer? Yes. It is a myth that my ideal set of circumstances must in be place before I can feel free to be me. But I have to make a choice. And that choice begins with telling myself a new, and better, story.