I love how life will hit us right between the eyes with a clear message, but only if we are truly listening and willing to receive. Every day since I lost my job, I have searched, reached, prayed, meditated, done anything and everything to face and deal with my fears, worries, and critical self judgments. Oh it is a fine dance that we have been taught the steps to since we took our first physical steps. This saddens me, for the young who feel hopeless about the world they are inheriting, for the elderly who have been left to rot in nursing homes (remember I worked in a nursing home, a day care, and taught junior high-so I do have some experience with diverse age groups), for the middle aged individual still trying to climb the ladder with no passion in their eyes, for the retired person who all of a sudden realizes they do not know who they are or what they like to do….We all sit at this precipice of great unknown vastness.
Each day I have consciously chosen to look right in the eye of my fears, chewed on my sabotaging statements to self, and looked desperately out into the world for inspiration, for the energy of true grace to lift my wings for another day. I have incredible cheerleaders in my life – WOW…they humble me every day with their absolute faith in my ability to rise out of the muck to manifest my dreams. Their steadfast presence in my life keeps me stepping, I can’t let them down, I can’t let me down…I can’t give in to the fearful mediocrity that we are taught life is…I must soar into the potential of that which can be.
I set my alarm last night for 5:00am, this was sleeping in as those who know me are aware, sure beat the old 3:45am alarm. I didn’t have to get up, after all I had no job waiting for me, no kids to shuffle to school this week, nothing awaited me – except taking sincere action towards my dreams!! I awoke to the nagging fear of “what am I doing”? How can I take care of the kids and myself until the business sustains us? What am I going to do to get from point A to B…blah..blah..blah…screamed the voice in my head. My insides churned and my breath stopped in my chest, not a good sign. I laid there playing out all kinds of scenarios, you know how that goes, “if I do this, or this, or try this” – more than half the thoughts were negative self-sabotaging “mind – f**k” limiting statements. The other half was based on three words – COURAGE, RISK, and ACTION!!
It was time to just put one foot in front of the other. I climbed forth, donned my workout cloths and proceeded to enjoy my cup of tea and quiet journal time (a mainstay in my world for over 20 years) before hitting the workout world at the nearby gym. I didn’t want to go, for doesn’t everyone see me as the jobless loser, isn’t it written on my forehead??? Thankfully my journal time helped me to purge the cruel negative thinking and move into a place of blind trust (even as I write those two words I chuckle inside, for most of the concrete thinkers in my world cringe at the pure paradox of those two words, screaming “get back to work girl”, “earn a pay check”, “you’re crazy”!!).
I hit the treadmill thinking, “today I should do a full twenty minutes here, sweat, purge, and cleanse all the negative thoughts with each flapping step forward.” The treadmill is such a great metaphor for the life most of us accept and live, each day we go through the motions, hoping that the scenery will change, that a miracle will smack us upside the head, or someone will wake us up to be brave. Instead we watch the miles and years go by, the view stays the same and below our feet the black runway clicks around and around. The only change is the speed and incline we choose to set for ourselves.
As I booked along I looked at my reflection in the glass window, since it was still dark outside I could see myself very clearly. It is a great time for me to share positive thoughts internally, to build myself up, not tear myself down as I seemed to being doing so well lately. I looked down at the time, fifteen minutes; cool, only five minutes to go to the goal. At seventeen minutes I caught myself thinking, “Ahhh… I can slow it down and take the decline down, it doesn’t matter, no one else knows that I had a different goal.” OMGoodness!! There it was smack in my face, a sellout, a give up, a quit mentality!! The truth struck me to the core – The runner who gives up ten feet from the finish line, the swimmer who can see the shore but stops swimming, the mountaineer who gives up before he reaches the peak!! As I explored this Ah-Ha moment I thought about the people I admire and look to for inspiration, Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Mandela, Lincoln, Edison, and then the more down to earth recent inspiring souls, Oprah, Barbara Streisand, Mastin Kipp, and….you get the point. They did not give up, they kept stepping even when it was really challenging, even when they weren’t sure they could survive.
I would not give up!! I would not stop!! The clock ticked, the black rubber spun beneath my feet, my breath sang with the rhythm of my steps – 20 minutes!! I made it with ease – but most importantly I did not sell myself out.
As I moved to the weights to focus on biceps/triceps and forearms I smiled at the incredible message I was given. Yep, coming to the gym today was the first gift of the day. I stayed keenly aware of other times I was cutting myself short – “Ahhh..it’s okay if I only do this many reps, it’s okay if I lower the weight, it’s okay if I don’t do that exercise…” WOW, humble wake up pie delivered in sweaty Technicolor!! This girl was not going to “play small”, “give up”, “sell out” – no way!! I am so grateful I got out of bed, put one foot in front of the other, made small goals at the gym which awakened me to how I often give up before I even see the finish line!!
It was time to go home, breathe into my courage, and take at least one risky step towards a new tomorrow. Action, Courage, Risk!!
Take a peak – look sincerely into your life, where do you sell yourself short.
*Do you sneak food hoping that no one is looking?
*Do you really want to tell your partner/children that you love them, but fear keeps it inside?
*Do you start out on a workout plan, only to come up with excuses of why you can’t do it?
*Do you feel sick, tired, unhappy…, and instead of working towards change, you accept and give up?
*Do you pour another glass of wine/beer/alcohol thinking no one can see?
*Do you have a dream that sits in your heart/soul waiting for you to manifest – yet you keep burying it waiting for tomorrow?
2 thoughts on “BIG lesson from the gym!!”
Hey Sis–great post. This line of yours really spoke to me: “The treadmill is such a great metaphor for the life most of us accept and live, each day we go through the motions, hoping that the scenery will change, that a miracle will smack us upside the head, or someone will wake us up to be brave.”
I think the scenery is always changing, that miracles are right there beside us, and that there are often individuals that jar or tickle our inner desire to be brave, to step off the track, to speed up or slow down…..BUT we get in our own way. We are too busy looking down at where are feet are falling and we miss all the possibilities poking up in front and around us. More than anything….we need to open our senses–our eyes, our ears, our minds. Making the choice to take an alternate path can be the greatest and most rewarding choice any of us makes. Do the unpredictable!
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Wonderful thought-provoking response sis :-)!! Yes, I agree with what you share, awareness and choice awaken us to all that is already present and that which awaits our YES to take action. Sadly, I do not meet many people who choose to do the “unpredictable”, to step off the worn path to explore a new less trodden one…. Interestingly lately that is exactly what I have been exploring -“who do I personally know that is living a “passionate” vibrant life?”