I was mindlessly walking my dog this afternoon when I tuned in to what I was saying to myself. It surprised me and then surprised me that it surprised me. I tuned in to being pretty mean to myself about not keeping up with this blog. I ranted a number of blog posts ago about how difficult it seems to be for me to keep up with posting on somewhat of a consistent basis. It isn't about not trying. I make notes in the margins of my client notes from sessions on a daily basis. There are countless nuggets that are completely blog worthy in my sessions. However, at the end of the day, when my brain finally gets to stop firing on all cylinders, I can hardly get myself to put a thought together about much of anything. Every day I'm waking up the next morning gently kicking myself about the things I was 'supposed' to remember to do the night before.
I thought I was listening to the birds. I thought I was listening to the ruffle of the leaves in the trees. I was actually calling myself some nasty names about not keeping up better with this blog. Then I realized exactly what it was that I wanted to write about for my next blog post. Why are we so mean to ourselves? What purpose does it serve? What if we stopped being mean to ourselves all together? Would we turn into lazy people who never did anything? Would we never work hard again without constantly throwing out the whipping stick? As a self-professed meanie, it can be a skeptical thought to think that turning into a nice guy would have a positive effect. At the same time, it does make sense.
If what we think leads to how we feel it begs to reason that changing our thoughts about ourselves might lead to a more positive and happy relationship with ourselves. If I walked around telling myself that I can instead of I can't there are a number of things that will happen. The first of which is a profound impact on my nervous system. The side of my nervous system that is focused on telling me when to fight or flee goes into overdrive at the sound of even one can't. My can't(s) like to participate in what I like to call the snowball effect. One can't can easily become ten can't(s) and my nervous system is starting to short out. I almost get tunnel vision. I'm no longer making eye contact. I'm so focused on my physiological symptoms that I can barely see what is happening outside of my skin. All the input I'm getting is 'my legs feel funny' or 'my stomach feels weak' or a running diatribe of judgments against myself for my weakened state. My body rarely feels powerful enough to do any fleeing! If there was a chance at one of those day turning around comments like, 'hey, I really like those pants!', I'd never see it because I'm busy listening to all the things I can't do. Snappy dressing isn't usually the one I'm known for.
Attempts to offer myself a little bit of belief in myself, a little bit of hope are likely to get a little bit more play when I'm backing myself up with a few I can's. My chest opens up. I can breathe a little bit. With a little bit more breath I feel like don't have to look down. I find myself looking down at those points when I can't bear to have someone even breath my way since I'm also thinking that everyone else thinks I can't either. Can't what who knows- that isn't what matters. When I'm breathing and giving myself a few I can's there's like an anti-snowball effect. It's like a sudden surge of super awesome sand castle building sand thrown at my feet. It comes from refusing to hold my breath. It comes from letting my belly hang out there full of breath and full of power. It come from letting one little I can spark a bigger I can until that one becomes another which grown into another.
So I may not write another blog post tomorrow. I may write a twenty little notes in the margins of my client notes before the next one. I can write another one. Guess you will have to come back to see.
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