Overwhelmed? Uninspired? Over-inspired? < it might not be a word but BELIEVE ME its a thing. Tired? Broken down? Restless? Anxious? Sometimes these feelings can come in like a chair to the face and sometimes they build up slowly.. a little here, a little there until a thick wall of ” I DON”T KNOW WHAT THE HELL I”M DOING” is 10 feet high and an inch from your nose. It use to happen to me often. Really often, like a-few-times-a-day often. Slowly I realized that hiding under the blanket, not moving and trying not to breathe, will not make me invisible to the intruding emotions. It will only postpone the inevitable. So instead, when I am feeling like I have no where to run, or too many roads to choose from I find my center and go back to the basics.
I call them the 4 B’s
in no particular order, when i’m feeling like I am losing control, I think to my self “if it doesn’t serve one of the 4 B’s I wont do it”
Now, there is a lot of leniency within those 4 words so let me break it down.
Book: Obvious. Write. Write Write Write and then write some more. But sometimes it’s looking through pictures of Lilee-Jean, reading doctor reports, doing research. Sometimes its just trying to comprehend those two years of my life while I stare at a blank computer screen. Whatever it is, though, it serves one thing. The book.
Brain: this can be my mental health, my desire to absorb knowledge, reading a book, watching a documentary. It can be helping out a friend or stranger in some way. writing all my 1.7 million business/creative endeavors down in full detail for an afternoon or spending time with someone I love. Or it can just be finding a moment of silence in a world of screaming.
Body: Literally anything physical. Walk, run, yoga, soccer, paddle boarding, hike, entertain my nephew (its as good of a work out as any) swim, no pants dance party, anything and everything that gets my body moving.
Bank Account: figure out how to put those wonderful ideas into money making actions. (because, although money isn’t happiness, if we are truly honest with ourselves, the more we have the more freedom we have to find the things that do make us happy)
So there they are. My basics. Each one of those things adds to my happiness. and all 4 of those things make up who I am on my most basic level. It’s not a mystery as to why those things are important but it wasn’t until I laid it out in the simplest way I know how (written in red lipstick on a mirror) that I understood that they are important. And more then that, how to serve each and every one of them. Sure, if you stretch, literally anything you do can be lumped into one of those things. The hard part is to have the discipline not to do that and to only focus on what you want to achieve in each category then do something, one thing, one tiny microscopic thing to take a step toward it.
There is another little inspo-word-picture floating around the internets that says
“At this stage in my life If it doesn’t
Make me Better
Make me Happy or
make me Money
I don’t make time for it”
At first read it sounds kind of selfish. And, honestly, it is. But if you break it down by grouping WHAT for each category, there is so much that you can do to make yourself better, make yourself happy or make yourself money that doesn’t just serve YOU. So using that structure, I sub categorized the things in my life that make my up my soul and the 4 B’s were born.
Life is confusing and hard and with social media exposing us to a LOT of terrifying, heartbreaking and disgusting things we sometimes lose focus of the here and now. I Know I do. I see what you all see and my heart bleeds(like so many of yours did for me and my sweet Lilee-Jean). I wouldn’t even know where to start to say or do anything that would help. What can I do as just one single human in a sea of revolving statuses and news stories. What can I say to help the underpaid single mom get through her day, or the parents who lost their son to an act of nature or human inflicted violence. My heart aches as though I know them, knew their child, brother, sister, friend, but what can I do from across the country or across the world? The mere thought of my uselessness urgently digs a hole deeper and deeper until my feet leave the ground and I fall into the darkness.
So I stop. and I go back to my basics. Because it’s all I can do. Because empathy hurts. because I can’t help them. Because I dont know how. Because my own grief fills my cart and without knowing it I so personally take on theirs and now my cart is over flowing. So I Stop.
Brain- go donate blood, make a donation, express condolences (even if they don’t feel like enough), cry for them, spend a moment and love that person, even just alone in my own home. Just spend a moment and love the ones that a hurting. and then take some time to love myself so that I can move forward in my life. But let myself be present in my emotions, and then get out of my own head and push on.
Back to the basics.
It’s not always sudden. Sometimes it takes a while, a few days even, to rid the heaviness from my heart, the chaos from my head. Sometimes it takes hours of floundering before I can start to swim again. But floundering is what makes us human. Losing ourselves in other’s grief, in our own complications and struggle or in the black hole of the unknown is what forces us to take a step back and reassess.
What are your basics?
How can you serve them?
in order to help those around us we must first help our selves. If we are lost in the chaos of first world problems we will never have a clear enough mind to do something for the greater good. Whether that greater good is within ourselves or for the masses, if you are in chaos and worry, you wont be able to serve.
Take this moment for what it is. Be in it fully. Let yourself experience things the way they were meant to be experienced; without distraction. You will be amazed at what solutions you will find when you stop thinking about the problem.
Find your light so you can shine it on others.