Friday, August 2, 2013

Outwards and Inwards

it's a spiral party!
The other day, I wrote about the concept of an upward spiral. In a nutshell, if we are mindful and conscious about our lives, I believe we move forward. But sometimes as I move forwards, even after much work and therapy and training and re-training, I feel stuck. The old issues rear up again, and it feels like I haven’t budged an inch. Instead of thinking I’m backsliding, I like to think that this means I am moving up and around. And as I do, I’m bound to revisit the old, hard stuff.
I’ve been thinking about the space around the spiral. On the outside of the spiral are all the material parts of life. Our jobs, how many likes we get on Facebook, our homes, our clothing, television. The things that are mostly solid and tangible and exist outside of us. These are fine and fun and mostly necessary things, but I don’t think they’re the most important things.

The best stuff is on the inside of the spiral. Our souls. God, or whatever I call something bigger than me: love, the ocean, music, sunlight. The things I can’t touch with my fingers, but that pour into me like blood and fill me up.

Lately I’ve been focusing too much on the outward stuff. Countless times throughout the day, I check my texts and my email and my page views. It is unconscious and mindless and it distracts me from slowing down to breathe and pray and eat foods from the earth and remember that I’m enough, this very second, exactly as I am, I am enough.

When I focus outwards too much, I get lost. I get dry. I eat more food than my body needs. I get snappy and distracted with my babies.

Balance has always been hard for me. So I’m trying something new. Each time I find myself reaching for my phone or my laptop, I’m going to remember the inside of the spiral. I’m going to pause and whisper a quick prayer. I’m going to take a breath big enough that I can hear it. I’m going to read a meditation or listen to a favorite song. Maybe I’ll simply put my hand over my heart until I feel a small shift, an opening, a quiet, steady beat.

How do you fill up and re-center?

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