At the start of the year, I decided that I’d spend January getting into the flow.
Getting Into The Flow – January Update
What I Decided
At the start of the month I decided that I would be:
- Creating a plan and trying to stick to it – so I had a date wise plan for writing/ blogging and other activities. I meticulously scheduled these into a calendar.
- Focusing on rituals and practices – sticking to my existing practices and adding meaningful practices and rituals to my daily life.
I tried to to achieve this by using these four steps:
- Plan purposefully
- Prepare prayerfully
- Proceed positively
- Pursue persistently.
What Life Decided
I can say with all honesty that I went through the first three steps. But I failed when it came to pursuing the plans.
One of the major reasons for failing was the fact that I have what appears to be shoulder tendonitis. This causes constant dull ache my left arm and sometimes a shooting pain that leaves me feeling awful. Since I’m left-handed and do quite a lot of housework, it’s hard to rest my arm as much as I would like to. My plans included writing and blogging and all writing and typing only aggravates the pain. So I had to cut back on both of these activities.
I felt frustrated, regretful and guilty about not sticking to my plans in the very first month of the year. Until I realized that perhaps this was perhaps what really my choice of word for the year was teaching me!
A few days into January, as I sat on our balcony writing my Morning Pages, I spotted a big kite soaring in the sky. I hadn’t seen this majestic bird for a few years and here it was suddenly seeming to float in the sky. Was there a message for me in this? It seemed to fit in with my word of the year and I realized that perhaps it was a reminder for me to let go and allow the ‘wind’ to take me where it willed. But I soon forgot about this and tried to go back to following my plan until my arm started acting up!
What I Learned
I have learned that I need to trust in the wisdom of my body and my emotions. I have to let go. I need to learn to rest. We are living in anxious times and allowing ourselves to rest and play makes it easier on our minds and bodies.
I also learned to be more open to the leading of God’s spirit. As I reflected on scripture and spent more quiet time, I was reminded that there are still many areas of my life that need healing and this work must continue.
Letting go of notions of perfectionism and long ingrained feelings of guilt that engulf me when I am not doing something ‘productive’ is truly what getting into the flow is all about.
I’m also trying hard to allow love and kindness to guide my decisions with regard to myself, my family , my work and community.
This is a reminder I received in my inbox – part of a piece from John O’Donohue:
You have traveled too fast over false ground;
Now your soul has come to take you back.
Draw alongside the silence of stone
Until its calmness can claim you.
Be excessively gentle with yourself.
I’m listening to this wisdom and getting into the flow.
How’s your Word of the Year translating into your life so far?