Sacred Thread Update: August New Moon 2021

Artwork by Barbara Stahler-Sholk

Hello Fellow Body-Mind-Hearts –

I don’t know about you but I have been feeling a great deal of decision fatigue. As circumstances rock and roll and shift around me I am having to constantly re-orient to new information and fresh situations and make more and more decisions. And some of those decisions simply have no good options. To travel or not? To visit family or not? To rest or prime my pump with a workout? I am tired…you?

I also notice that culturally we are told that the process of decision making is between the brain and the heart… but where does the body come in? Our body, that is home to our brain and heart, has much to offer us in the process of deciding. One of the things I have learned over the years of recovering my body wisdom is that my body can offer some much needed insight about how certain choices impact my nervous system. We can invite this wisdom into the deciding process for more depth and clarity. We do want to consider the intellectual information and the emotional components but let’s not forget to access the knowing that comes through our body when we pause long enough to literally feel each choices’ impact. Taking some time to ‘try on’ different options and seeing/feeling how my body responds can really help in my deciding process…often it is reaffirming to what my brain knows and just as often I learn something new about myself.

If I say to you, imagine you are biting into a fresh wedge of lemon. What happens in your body? Even just writing this sentence my mouth started to salivate and pucker! So you can do the same thing with imagining different options and seeing how your body responds…does it tense or settle? Do feel energized or exhausted? Is there a buzz and if so, can you tell if it is pleasurable excitement or anxiety? The key is to give it some time and be curious.

Even with the wisdom of the body on board, making lots of decisions can be tiring. So finding ways to simplify and lessen the need for decisions can be a gift to ourselves. Former President Obama always wore grey or blue suits and ate the same thing for breakfast because he said, “I’m trying to pare down decisions. I don’t want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make.”…You think?! Makes sense to me. I eat pretty much the same things for breakfast every day and I often wear the same outfit several days in a row. It’s okay to not be creative every single moment but to be enchanted and soothed by the familiar. 

I also have days where I offer up my decision making to my beloved. We call these ‘Maestro’ days. On these days one of us assumes the role of maestro and the other gets to sit back and follow their lead. Of course the follower has some input and veto power but ultimately the maestro guides the day and makes the decisions. And it’s amazing how relieving it is to simply go with the flow and how obvious it is when I have the energy and desire to lead and decide. We both love these days and how they offer us a respite from decision making with another and how it deepens our intimacy as well. You may not have a partner to do this with but you can find ways to simply follow the flow of another’s day or create a day that doesn’t require a lot of decisions. I find this an amazing practice of surrender. 

All this is to say…be gentle with yourself and understand the huge demands that are upon all of us. Find ways to be generous with yourself and others while we find the energy to decide what to do and how to do it and where to do it! Listen to your body as she has some insight that is sometimes hidden from view. Sometimes simply going out for a walk or doing a yoga asana practice or getting into the garden can help shift the demand and make space of clarity. Simple can be powerful. 

 

May we be willing to surrender small parts of our day to familiarity and ease

May we be kind and gentle with ourselves as we navigate the furiously shifting terrain of today’s life

May we honor the energy decisions require and give them the time they need and let go when necessary 

May we find ways to simplify and demand less of ourselves in some ways in support of offering more of ourselves in others

May we listen tenderly to the wisdom and feedback of our bodies

May we be compassionate with ourselves and others during these trying times


Practice Prompts:

  • Consider where in your life you might simplify the decision making process and see if that can offer you more space in your body-mind-heart.
  • When grappling with a big decision make a pro/pro list. Everything has pros and cons, so a list of these doesn’t always help. But if you can see where the weight of pros lie that can sometimes be insightful. (I thank my mother, Ann, for this wisdom!)
  • Practice tuning into your body sensations for some feedback about different options…try the option on fully in your body-mind-heart and then tune into your body and see what sensations are present. Then do the same thing with the other options. Remain curious and open and see if this can give you more clarity and insight to proceed and decide.
  • Schedule a free 20 minute Introductory Consultation to learn more about what I offer and how I might be able to support you in learning more of your body language wisdom.

Upcoming Live Streaming Practice Opportunities:


Inspirational Wisdom:

Wage Peace

Wage peace with your breath.
Breathe in firemen and rubble,
breathe out whole buildings
and flocks of redwing blackbirds.
Breathe in terrorists and breathe out sleeping children
and freshly mown fields.
Breathe in confusion and breathe out maple trees.
Breathe in the fallen
and breathe out lifelong friendships intact.
Wage peace with your listening:
hearing sirens, pray loud.
Remember your tools:
flower seeds, clothes pins, clean rivers.
Make soup.
Play music, learn the word for thank you in three languages.
Learn to knit, and make a hat.
Think of chaos as dancing raspberries,
imagine grief as the outbreath of beauty
or the gesture of fish.
Swim for the other side.
Wage peace.
Never has the world seemed so fresh and precious.
have a cup of tea and rejoice.
Act as if armistice has already arrived.
Don’t wait another minute.

~ Mary Oliver

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