daily work

you are your habits.

Does that feel good or does that sentence make you feel uncomfortable? It sure makes me uncomfortable. I’ve been watching too much television and eating a lot of chocolate. This is what happens when your birthday and mother’s day fall in the same week as the first cold snap of the year and the Game of Thrones final season is running.

But this morning I turned to my old ‘good’ habits to pull me out of the trench I’ve made for myself over the last week. GoT is done and dusted, I’ve finished season 4 of Lucifer and almost finished all the chocolate… so this morning I woke up early, did my 20 minutes of TM, wrote in my gratitude journal and wrote my goals for this year. Then in my Morning Pages (3 pages of stream of consciousness writing) I mused on how much better my life is since I started this daily work.

  • I credit the Morning Pages with helping me write a 120,000 word novel, more than 300 blog posts, a novella, and 2 first drafts in less than 2 years.
  • I credit my Gratitude practice – writing each evening 10 things I am grateful for from that day – with bringing so much good into my life.
  • I credit writing my goals daily for staying focussed on what I really want.
  • I credit meditation with the peace I feel so often, my new-found ability to be kinder, calmer and happier.

I think back to this time 2 years ago and I was just about to be really miserable! I had just taken on the Nightmare Job and shit was about to get real. But if I hadn’t taken that job, with that hour long commute, would I have started listening to the podcasts that pushed me to change my paradigm? Would I have hit rock-bottom emotionally and been forced to find a way back to the surface? Without that dark winter of discontent would I have learned what I needed to learn about myself? Without those last three months in that job, would I have had the opportunity to put everything I had learned into practice and finally ‘graduate‘ from all the lesson I wished I’d learned in the Dream Job?

You’re always exactly where you need to be, so yes, probably…I would have just had to learn it in some other way!

There’s an old man sitting on his verandah with his dog. The dog is howling and yelping. The neighbour calls to the old man “Is your dog okay?”

“No, he’s not okay,” the old man replies. “He’s sitting on a nail.”

The neighbour is surprised. “Why doesn’t he get off the nail?”

The old man smiled and said, “Obviously it doesn’t hurt enough yet.”

~ heard on Debbie Millman’s Design Matters podcast interview with Amanda Palmer

It’s not magic – we just have to be willing to get up off that nail and do what needs to be done to heal the wound. It’s not about blaming the nail or the person who put it there. Sometimes it involves getting rid of the nail, sometimes it involves learning to live with it and being mindful that it’s there. Sometimes you have to move to a whole new porch.

No matter how our wounds got there, it’s our responsibility to heal them and no one else can do it for us.

Healing ourselves is our gift to the world.