Sunday, June 10, 2018

Slow Dancing with Discipline

I haven't settled yet into a pattern for this writing.

I'd like to find a regular time of day, when I feel good and full of energy, when my mind is at its best, and when my heart is open and present for whatever wants to be felt in the moment and expressed. That's got me thinking, generally, about how I spend my time and whether my patterns and habits support everything I'd like to do with my days and evenings.

I'm not a person who, generally, likes a disciplined existence. I like to be spontaneous and available for the small surprises and serendipity that might come my way. I like to notice what is emerging in the moment and to be available and free to respond to that. I can ground myself easily, so I often think there is no detriment to what seems like an unbounded and free existence. 

The thing is, I've introduced what is essentially a new daily discipline into my life but I haven't really made a plan for how I am going to accomplish it. I've simply made a decision and have been disciplining myself to honor that promise. So what happens on some days is I find myself writing when I am tired or writing down to the wire or writing with a headache or writing around other things I am doing. 

And I wonder what might happen if I make this writing the most important feature of my day and allow everything else to take a step back for a few months so that I can fully engage this daily writing practice.   

What might that life look like and what supporting practices do I need in order to take full advantage of this journey?  

I'm laughing out loud right now because it seems like I may be declaring more promises to myself than this daily writing practice. The plot thickens for me and I am realizing that this spontaneous declaration I've felt pulled toward is a much larger journey than I'd originally imagined. It might even be life-changing. 

It might mean things like paying better attention to what I put in my body and how I move my body, when and how much I sleep, more disciplined attention to my spiritual practice, scheduling my time when I don't absolutely have to be somewhere, getting support to work with what might come up for me as I become more conscious around everything, paying better attention to my social connections, creating more welcoming spaces in my home to better hold this life that I am creating. 

I'm starting to feel just a little rebellious at the thought of all that. It sounds like a lot of work.

But I'm still laughing. That's a good sign.

And I'm having a good time laughing at myself. And a good time witnessing the battle going on in the landscape of my soul as I write this evening. Battle might be too strong a word. It's more like an opening skirmish. The thought just occurs to me that I might like to read "The Art of War" to see if there's any wisdom there for working with myself around all this. 

I won't resolve all of this right now. There are no sudden epiphanies that will put me on the path to perfect execution. I can even be a little stubborn around doing what is best for me. 

For now I think I'll study my weekly schedule and see what is fixed, what is semi-regular, and how I might be able to show up at a regular time each day rather than simply showing up each day. Now that I've had ten days of showing up, perhaps I can step more deeply in and commit to a time to write. And then we'll see how my life evolves to support that.

I suppose I could use someone else's blueprint for all of this. Lord knows I see a daily parade of this master class or that group experience with someone else's "BOLD statements" and "proven method to uplevel your life" sashaying across my Facebook newsfeed. But I like to discover things for myself. And I love a good expedition into the lesser explored landscapes of the soul. 

So here we are.  

The Summer of Self-Love is a daily writing practice birthed on June 1, 2018 as a container for harnessing three months of thriving. The goal at the end is to have a dinner party. Sounds like an odd Hero's Journey, doesn't it? Most of them usually are. 

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