Week 2: Let's Be Honest, I Kind of Suck at Slowing Down

yurt life and slowing down.jpg

Back in July when this whole move came about I felt deeply in my gut that one of the main reasons I was being called to move to Bodega and live this way of life was to slow down and simplify so that I could really figure out who I am and what I am here for.

Well, almost three months in and I must confess. I kind of suck at the slow down.

On my drive to Encinitas this week I was deep in thought about how something just felt off. I’m not going to sugar coat it. The last two months have been hard. Transitions are never easy and I have no idea why I always think the next one I’ll just glide through it with absolutely no bumps, no questioning, no anything remotely emotional (Said the most emotional person in the world. Insert eye roll here). Now mind you, I don’t just go through small transitions. All mine are like, uproot and change every aspect so I feel totally unstable and ungrounded kind of transitions. And this one was definitely no different.

And I should have known better when I broke my foot and had a sudden relationship ending all within the span of three days a week before I moved that this one was probably going to take the cake. That life, something bigger, was pushing me out of the next. It was time to get really uncomfortable.

While at The Home Depot a week and a half before I left, I dropped a 4 ft by 8 ft sheet of plywood on my left food from about 2-3 feet up and watched it all happen in slow motion as I lost my grip and the wood came crashing down before I could get my food out of the way.

Then, three days later over dinner the guy I was seeing and I ‘accidentally’ broke things off. I’m serious. We were fully intending to continue exploring our relationship from a distance but I now see that that wouldn’t have worked for me. I still look back and think, WTF happened there?

THAT my friends, is a perfect example of how the Universe steps in because you aren’t doing the very thing you know you need to do. I knew he wasn’t right but he was a really amazing guy and there were SO many things about him that did feel right it was easier for me to not listen to that small voice in the back of my mind that was saying, “Nope. This is still not it but it’s close.”

So when I wasn’t icing and elevating my foot and trying to figure out why the hell my relationship ended out of nowhere, I was looking up into the heavens with a smirk saying, “Ok, ok! Jeez la weez! Pipe down up there I’m picking up what you are laying down already.

Let go and surrender.

But sometimes I don’t want to surrender. Sometimes, I really want to control every single aspect of my life until my insides are wound up so much that I explode like one of those creepy Jack In the Box’s because I can’t take the pressure any longer.

So I moved here with a broken foot and a super bruised heart and sat alone in a yurt in the middle of nowhere wondering what the fuck did I just do.

All the while in the back of my head I kept hearing a voice say, “Just slow down Amanda. It’s okay to slow down.”

So I tried. Some of it was unintentional because the emotional force of the transition had me literally paralyzed at times…with a broken foot. Other times I remembered that little voice in the back of my head and intentional tried to discern what slowing down even meant.

To be clear, that little voice in the back of my head is something we all have. It’s called our higher self, our intuition, our inner guidance. It’s the one that told me to move to Encinitas and also told me to buy a saw. It’s the one that told me to look on my ex-husbands computer and ultimately leave my marriage. It’s the one that says, “don’t go down that dark road.” The one that always guides me to my next thing and never leads me astray. And I remembered that about a year and a half ago, it started telling me to slow down and simplify my life.

Except, what I realized on my drive to Encinitas this past week was that I’m not exactly sure I even know what that means for me. And that I am really good at pretending I’m slowing down but in reality, I’m still just busying myself and my mind.

I also think it’s easy to look around and see other’s definitions and take bits and pieces of what they are doing and apply it to our own reality which in part is a way of figuring out what is true for you and I was doing that but something felt off.

Most of the time I think I’m slowing down but I’m really still doing. Like for example, I take Baker on walks and bring my phone and listen to music or a podcast. Sometimes that’s fine but mostly it’s just another distraction. Or I sit on my couch and work on macrame or weaving something on my new handmade loom while watching another episode of Scandal and I convince myself this is the slow down. And maybe for some people it is. But for me, something still fells off.

So on my drive to Encinitas I thought more about this. How the week leading up to this trip I was rushing and caught back in the hustle of getting it all done and I just kept thinking, I don’t like this feeling. I mean, I LOVED most of what I was doing. I was back to creating and just so in the flow but I also felt the old stories of validation from my business start to creep back up. Look at me I’m SO BUSY. I must be worthy now.

And I know very clearly I don’t want that existence. And I’m tempted to say that I know there will be times in life where the hustle is sometimes necessary but is it? Or is that just a deep seeded conditioning by society. Have we just been so programmed to believe that we really need to work hard to play harder? Do we really have to burn the candle at both ends to feel successful?

So today I’m back from my trip down to Encinitas where I was commissioned to make this barn door and I’m recommitted to understanding what the slow down truly means to me. And to understand this, I have to get quiet and really listen.

To be continued.

Weekly Life Musings for One Year

When I felt the call to start my first blog back in 2008, I had no idea why I felt such a strong internal pull to do so. I had so many negative stories about my ability to write well that I was terrified to actually put my thoughts out into the world. But thoughts and ideas and a voice I knew I had. There was something deep inside that was pushing me to start writing.

And then slowly the why became more obvious and still is unfolding.

There are people who love to write and there are writers. Those of us that NEED to write to fulfill a part of our soul’s purpose. That’s me.

I’ve been sporadic with my writing for the past eleven years mainly because the way I write is more of a channeling process. I live my life and when something needs to be shared it floods through me quickly. That is why I can go months without a new post here.

But over the last few weeks, I’ve been thinking about the responsibility of being a writer. I’ve started getting paid to write and would love to continue doing so, more frequently. My fear is this though, how do I do something consistently that only comes out through me when IT’S ready to be shared?

I’ve been thinking about this more and realize that as much as I am a channel, writing is also like a muscle that needs to be worked consistently, regardless if you ‘feel’ like it.

That is why I decided to create a little challenge for myself — to work that muscle and create more habits that get me writing more frequently.

Thus, 52 to Letting Go was born.

So what is 52 to Letting Go?

It’s an experiment of sorts. To get me to A) write more about one of my favorite topics and B) work my writing muscle so it becomes more second nature for me instead of me waiting for the words to come which sometimes can take a really long time.

This idea came to me on my drive up to Seattle last week as I was ruminating over my life and what I think I’m here to do.

Write, create and share.

I realized that I have a lot of excuses and one of them is this whole idea that I can’t write frequently because that’s just not how the words come to me. I thought about what would inspire me to create a better routine with writing and since I’m really into life experiments right now (ie: moving to a yurt to see how I feel about that kind of life) I realized that this was a great way to accomplish a couple of goals with one stone.

But I like the idea of a weekly blog post that shares the ups and downs of this new life of mine, what’s currently going on in my life in general and more on this overarching theme taking place for me — letting go and surrendering.

My ultimate goal though is really just to write more.

And to just stop worrying so much about the things I can not control and be in a more consistent flow of trusting life.

I’ve tried blog series in the past and I always fail to write the second post so a weekly post may be a challenge for me. But this is a challenge I am willing to accept.

I’ve also tried to get on a weekly blog posting schedule but something always comes up. But really, when I get honest with myself, I’m not prioritizing the very thing I love doing most.

So every Monday for the next fifty-two weeks I’ll be posting about the previous week. I’m committed. It’s gonna happen. I have no idea what it’s going to look like, that is part of the letting go piece. As much as I want to create a system and a consistent style of posting, I’m going to go with the flow.

But by this time next year, we shall see. Maybe I’ll have the beginning of a book.

Here is to consistently showing up for myself, setting bigger goals and doing the damn thing.