The cool think about getting older is the ability to learn about myself. More especially, to get quicker and smarter about how to manage my moods and push a reset when life doesn’t feel so good.
Here is a simple formula:
When I am tired it’s much easier to get cranky and want to blame others for my problems. This is what I call my inner kid taking over, as my adult is literally too tired. That kid, though, she is always on the ready to defend. Sadly, her ideas are rooted back in the past with a big gap in understanding how powerful I am, as an adult human being.
So when I notice crankiness and blame, I know that rest is what my consciousness is ordering. So I now freely make time for it. Sleeping in. Going to bed early. Canceling an optional social engagement. Taking a nap. Stopping to listen to music in headphones. You get the drift.
Intellectually, I think it’s relatively easy to understand this. But practically speaking, it can be really hard for a hard-driving personality to Stop. And. Rest. And, Do. Nothing. Nothing. At all. (I know this from personal experience.)
So part of the ‘activity’ in the silent retreat I am hosting, is to rest and do nothing. My main idea for the retreat is to create a space, a container, for your consciousness to relax, then discover fresh new parts of yourself. All slackers are welcome as are all Type A personalities.
Find Yourself in the Written Word
To balance the rest, and still feed my consciousness, writing is incredibly effective. There is magic between the hand and the head and the heart — writing takes the abstract and makes it tangible, real, memorable. As the writer, Joan Didion said so clearly, “I don’t know what I think until I write it down.” Curiously, writing is different than merely thinking. I believe that is because the kid self can take over the mind so easily.
With writing, we slow down a little and then have the luxury of seeing those thoughts on the page! That also makes it easier to sort kid thoughts aka monkey mind thoughts, from adult thoughts, and from soul thoughts. Yes, each of us has the ability to tap into unconscious wisdom via the process of writing. If you’re curious about this last part, you can search for “automatic writing.” I practice it several times a week when I rise.
Let me know how these tools work for you. One of the unusal aspects of the retreat I’m offering is that you are not required to do anything other than be in silence — all activities are opt-in. So come and nap!
Image Credits from Unsplash: