I never realized, until recently, how cyclical we all are in our energy flow and how little we honor this, in lieu of being (ahem) human. The earth and moon rotate beautifully through their cycles. The tides, our seasons, the shapeshifting of ocean water into rain and back again. So naturally, we've got it all figured out with our own cycles too, right? Uh, no. Not always.
I for one bulldoze right through my slower, lower energy cycles with relentless fervor - checking boxes, measuring my self worth by way of getting shit done. All the while wondering why I'm feeling so sluggish, and then shooting espresso as an avoidence tactic.
Sound familiar? Sure it does. We are all card-carrying members of the Attainment Allstars, and man do we know how to push and persevere, despite our body and spirit telling us to do otherwise. Sometimes telling us to do nothing at all...but rest.
Nope, no time for rest!
Get things done!
Get to the goal!
Achieve and complete. Full stop.
The crazy thing is that we just don't do our best work when we're misaligned with our energy cycles. Process becomes painful and frustrating. Things we love to do become hard labor. And we can forget about creative revelation - because that is almost the first to go, every time.
So what do we do? Well, bear with me as your Newbie in Residence on this stuff, but I have a few ideas on how to get in full flow with our energy cycles, so we can keep bringing our collective amazingness to the world.
1.) Get your head (and heart) into the mindfulness game. Start with small bursts of meditation, easing your way to longer ones and start rewiring that brain toward awareness and intention. Oh, and yes, apps are okay! Headspace has been a game changer for me, and others include InsightTimer, Oak, and Calm. Even five minutes per day counts. And once you've got it down, take the practice with you "on the road" - stop to reflect and breathe a minute in line at the store, while washing dishes, in between conference calls. It all adds up.
2.) Give your awareness some love! Even in times of stress and hurry, take a beat and raise your head to look around; to witness circumstance, environment, people, feelings. It may just give you the nudge of perspective you need, both in that moment of awareness, and further down the road as well.
3.) This is an important one. Simply notice what's going on in those beats of awareness, without trying to change them in some way. Play the role of observer/watcher/witness, letting your ego sit in the back seat for a minute. (God knows he/she will be back at the helm in no time, telling you what to say/how to feel/where to go next. This moment is for you.) What feelings are you experiencing? What's going on in your body? Are there certain senses you're engaging in this moment? How is your heart reacting? Just...notice. You might learn a thing or two.
- Wait a minute, my client's deadlines don't need to sour my mood at the dinner table.
- Hmmm, my jaw feels tight when I try to have civil political conversation with my uncle.
- Whoa...the way the sunlight hits that Redwood tree makes my heart skip a beat!
4.) Honor what's going on for you, with curiosity and kindness, before making your next move. Remember: everything you need to inform this is inside of you, and with the mindful awareness and noticing, your answers to "what now?" are in the palm of your hand.
We are cyclical creatures. We get tired, depleted, unintegrated. We bounce back, wake up, generate. Sometimes, there's an evolution from one to the next. Other times, it seems we're struck sideways with it, all at once.
Be mindful and aware, notice and honor where you are. What does your heart say about kicking off that epic novel/project/lesson plan you've been brainstorming? Is your energy clean and clear and ready? Are you well rested and focused? Heart-centered? Feeling fueled?
If not, that is OKAY. Doing nothing is fine. Healthy even. Remember, this is a cycle. Your time will come back around again and in flow, you'll be in pique performance mode. Ready to take on the world with your brightness.
And we need your brightness.