Today I am celebrating a mostly unplanned day. Life has been brim full with activities and “to do’s” that make me productive and happy. These days also make me stressed and stretched. Today is a stop day to celebrate emptiness. Today is a Deb Day—a day for getting my house in order by creating some white space for be. Today is a day to reorder my personal space and to re-connect with myself. Today is a day to celebrate me. What is on my “to do” list—nothing? What activities am I going to do today? I don’t know!
My life is brim to the top and overflowing. Papers to grade. Classes to plan. Curriculum to write. House to clean. Bills to write. Wedding to plan. Any and every day, I have a “to do” list that can keep me busy from the moment I awake at 5 till I go to bed at about 10. And this is the cycle that happens to me when I let that “to do” be my major motivator:
The first days of my “to do” way of life I am totally productive. I get so much done and I feel accomplished as well as motivated. The next few days, less gets checked off. I lose a bit of focus. I start to slip away from self-care (I might not write for a day. Or I don’t record my food. I choose not to exercise.) Then I spend a day or two looking at the “to do’s” and postponing much of what needs to be done till the next day. I become more mindless in my actions and my thoughts. I lose motivation to eat correctly and might begin to eat mindlessly as well. I feel bad about not accomplishing what I need to do. I move more slowly in what I want to do—yet somehow all that I need to do gets done. In a worst case scenario I then move to what I have been calling “unconscious” living—for a day, a week, a month or longer—doing what I need to do, but somehow losing a sense of self. Till I regroup, mindfully look at my needs and often start the “to do” list again. What a cycle!
So today…I am breaking that cycle. I have been in the “to do” phase. Moved to the slip-from-self-care phase. Touched into the mindless phase. And I am choosing to not going into the unconscious phase. Today is my day to regroup. To put away the “to do”. And use the day for me. A day to celebrate unplanned. A day to celebrate reordering and re-connecting. A day for me. This is what I celebrate this Saturday.
My goal—to break the cycle at stage one of the cycle rather than stage 4 or 5. That is to come. Today I am noticing. And that makes a world of difference and is definitely something to celebrate!
Thank you to Ruth for creating a space that allows us to share celebration and for encouraging us to look for the many places in our lives that celebrations exist. Thank you, Ruth!