I have had several conversations in the past few weeks with folks who were really struggling. And when I asked them what they were doing to take care of themselves, the common theme in their answer was that they had gotten disconnected from something they love to do (exercise, paint, etc.). As I listened to them, I realized that I was feeling their pain. I’ve been disconnected from something I love too.
I began blogging over five years ago. What started as an exercise in trying to provide good online content (and maybe build my business a bit in the process) rapidly turned into something that I loved doing. I moved from monthly posts to weekly posts, to even more frequent posts. I realized that writing is an important outlet for me. I feel like I am providing a service to my clients and those folks who may not be able to be my clients because of distance or other constraints. Sitting down to write focuses me on the work that I do, and helps me clarify my professional purpose. And I just love to do it. During my busy years, I was writing 50-60 original posts a year. This year, I have written less than 20 posts.
There are some valid reasons for that. I’m doing more at school with my kids. My practice has been incredibly busy. My work hours are limited during the summer.
But I think there are also some insidious self-sabatoging reasons. Some reasons linked to my internal messaging about what I should be able to accomplish with my hours. Some reasons that tie into the tendency to try to hide the shame that I feel when I don’t live up to my goals. Or a struggle to admit that I still feel shame when I don’t live up to my goals.
Because I know better than that. Right? I wrote two years ago that we deserve self-care no matter what. I have written post after post about restarting something after we’ve been interrupted. I know this stuff. I teach this stuff.
And the truth is, we have days or weeks or months or years that getting reconnected is a struggle. That we try to restart and can’t quite get there. That we haven’t managed to reboot. Or maybe we tell ourselves that we’ve had enough chances to restart. That we were supposed to have figured it out already. I know that I have heard some of that messaging this year.
So here is another truth. I love to write. And I will continue to write. I’d love to write at least one post a week. But I’m going to continue to write even if I am barely scraping by at one post a month. Because I love to do it. And that is a good enough reason. I don’t have to write often enough. I don’t have to be profound enough. I don’t have to meet any predetermined rules about how I participate in something that I love. I love to do it. And that means that I am allowed to write whenever I can make the time to do so. No matter what the little shame demon says.
Are you missing something that you love? Has it been out of your life for a while? Is your shame demon keeping you from re-engaging with that love? Whether it is writing or moving or art or performing–I hope that you do something this week that you love. Want to share it in the comments? That would be amazing. Want some help getting reconnected? Let me know–we can work on being human together.