Eight days in Italy not only allowed me to appreciate incredible food, wine, views, historical sites and time with loved ones, it provided me with some much needed time for reflection. No e-mails to check, no Facebook or Twitter posts to publish, no meetings, no classes and no deadlines. Just open space to create the possibility of living in the flow and taking in everything vacation has to offer, relaxation!
Doing some reflection and journaling while enjoying a nice glass of red while the sun is setting.
And with no to do list and open space, comes reflection. A lot of it. It was the first time in a while that I felt like I could step outside of myself and really understand the “why” behind past actions and thoughts. For example, as I have mentioned in past blog posts, I love to be productive. I love it so much so that I try to cram everything I can into every possible second of the day. It’s something I’m aware of and am making progress towards it. However, being away from my day to day I was not only able to be aware of it, I was able to understand “why” I was doing it. My “why” reason was that getting stuff done and being busy was feeding my ego. It was my way of feeling important.
Now more than ever, I’m not only aware of when I try to do to much but I ask myself, “why do I feel the need to justify my importance? What’s lacking?” Inquiry is such a powerful tool for self care and just like being in mountain tops of Italy, it inspires you to get real with yourself.
Here are two ways to get real with yourself:
1. First, the next time you’re rushing around and you can feel yourself filling up with negative energy, ask yourself “why”?
Why are you doing whatever you’re doing? Why are you feeling this way? Why are you portraying yourself this way? Why are you blaming someone (if this is the case)? Be honest and be ok with the answer. For a double challenge, I offer you the opportunity to write it down the answer to these questions and spend at least 5 to 10 minutes journaling about it free flow style; letting whatever come out, come out on those pages.
2. Each week, create at least one “mini vacation” just for you. It could be an afternoon at the beach, a yoga class, a run or as simple as a 15 minute walk in one of your favorite parks. Solo time where you’re doing something you love that relaxes you and gets you away from your day to day. At some point during this experience, spend 5 to 10 minutes journaling free flow style. Don’t worry about what your writing just write, and if you have nothing to say, write that down. Brianna Welke, one of my “Day in the Life bloggers“, talks about how her day incorporates some type of “quietude” whether its a quick trip to the beach, desert or mountains, yoga class or walk with her dog (she lives in California 🙂 ). “Quietude is such an important way to take care of ourselves.
Tree pose while on-looking the Barolo vineyards.
Take on these challenges and let me know what you think. Namaste!