Calling myself out on wasting time on judgment, speculation and telling stories that weren’t mine to tell, helped me reclaim my own story (and a lot of space)
Usually my best inspiration and clarity comes to me when I am out on my walks or hikes, which isn’t really surprising. Thank you, Mother Nature. I figured out long ago that time outdoors is my medicine — my reset, my way of stepping out of any life chaos that may be unfolding to regroup. Of course, taking a walk on the wild side isn’t about avoidance, it’s actually quite the opposite. Sometimes you simply need to step away from the desk, the confrontation or whatever you are being stressed by to look from the outside in — to see the truth of the situation, not only the emotional trigger and kneejerk response.
And whether we may be feeling stress, fear, disappointment or anger…it all feels similar to the nervous system that is scrambling overtime to help us keep it all together.
Knowing what you need to reset is critical, in fact, radical self-care.
I’d love to say a trip to Bali and a million dollars would set me free (and trust me, sometimes I fantasize about that)…but what I really need is to remove myself from the heat of the moment…to breathe, to calm, to listen. My go-to’s are walks, meditation and matcha lattes in the middle of the afternoon with a friend. They pull me right from the noise into the truth. And I will break from whatever is happening around me to do one of the three at any given point — an impromptu soul kiss and ensuing pivot.
Not only do they physically take me out of the situation, they clear the space for perspective…and some necessary self-reflection. Why is this happening again? Why do I feel stuck on repeat? What am I not seeing that needs to be seen?
It also helps me see some of the more unsavory things I may be stuck within: judgment, resentment, jealousy, insecurity. Yep, they’re all there standing by, waiting to join the pity party.
So back to walks, resets and inspiration. The walks aren’t magic pills. I don’t expect them to solve the problems of my world, but instead to simply pull me from the spiral down — to create space for my body to relax and enable me to move from reaction to reflection. That is their gift.
And within that quiet, my wisdom tip toes out and feels safe to emerge…and most importantly, I can begin to feel safe enough to trust it.
When I huffed and puffed my way through a recent walk, venting all the way — I simply realized and stated aloud that I no longer want to tell the stories that aren’t mine to tell (which seems obvious enough, but let me explain).
How many times do we get caught up in dramas that aren’t even ours? This boundary gets crossed in the name of friendships, family, co-workers, people-pleasing and basically all human relationships. It’s also how we write our own endings without any real knowledge of the big picture. Oh, speculation, my old friend. We can’t help it, we like to control things.
Have you ever gotten a quick text or email that seems to have a ‘tone’ that you misconstrued — and then a whole unnecessary drama ensued? Have you ever been disappointed with a rejection — perhaps a professional outreach or job search? And then there is gossip and supposition. How many times have you caught yourself ‘innocently’ sharing something with someone else that isn’t yours to share (families are skilled at this one)?
All in the name of love and concern, we give ourselves a hall pass to analyze things that aren’t ours to analyze. S/he should really be doing this…or not be doing that (and as a big sister, I honestly get stuck in the weeds of that one all the time).
Point being, it’s easy to get caught up and waste mind time on stories that aren’t ours to tell, fix or worry about.
WOW. Remove that and you’ve got a bunch of free time on your hands. But first, you’ve got to catch yourself doing it and call it out. And a little hint: once you do, you’ll be shocked at how freeing and spacious it is. Try it, you’ll like it.
This also leads us to the truth — uncovering ways we can protect that going forward, which is by practicing clear communication. Damned if I know why that seems to be so hard for most of us! What should be so easy and obvious can actually be so obfuscated.
The next time, instead of speculating about something — how about simply asking things like:
- I’m not sure I understand what you are saying here.
- I’d love it if you could clarify what you mean by that.
- I don’t want to misunderstand your intention here. What did you mean when you said…?
- I’d love to talk with you about how I’m feeling about this and would love to hear how you are as well.
Speculating falls into the same wasted energy category of saying things like, I’m fine (when we’re not). I look forward to seeing you (when we don’t) or when we run off into our corners, angry or hurt by something we may have completely misconstrued.
I’m adopting a promise to self about being truly mindful of my words. If I don’t have time to communicate thoughtfully, the communication will have to wait.
Trust, me it takes way too long to unravel a communication gone wrong. If I feel hurt or disappointed by something, I’m going to take action steps on behalf of myself. Again, I’m going to be conscious of my words — are they the truth, are they helpful and loving (to myself and others), are they of benefit, are they coming from my Best Self? If not, why? What are they trying to reveal to me? Where am I being asked to look deeper? What am I being asked to let go of or walk away from?
Oftentimes the simplest of shifts in our awareness can result in the most monumental of impacts. The more you listen, the more you hear…and the quicker you arrive back to your center.
Find your resets and hold them tight. Witness where life is calling you. You may not have access to mountain walks, but you can find your equivalents…trust me. The truth is that after living in cities around the world most of my life, the last thing I wanted was to end up in a small, rural town in the mountains. Dramatic life events, upheaval and the need for a lot of healing led me here even when I didn’t even realize what was unfolding. The moment I ceased from resisting was the moment I began to exhale. Trust life. Trust yourself. There is no perfect path other than the one you choose. And remember, home is where the healing is. Does this feed my healing, feeling and thriving, or not? That’s the story I want to focus on now.
Have you ever caught yourself amidst the drama, speculation, emotional chaos and nonsense of the stories that don’t belong to you? What’s your reset — how do you pull yourself out and place yourself back into your own? Please share with us how you call yourself out on this in the comments below.