I have become aware that sometimes it is helpful for me to share some of my own life practices. A behind the scenes look, if you will.  I try to do that regularly, but didn’t quite understand how penetrating the visual of my struggle can be until the last couple of weeks.  I guess most folks tend to see me when I’m sharing concepts that work in life, or in my office where we are focused on how to heal, or in a workshop where again, I am talking about how to move forward – to be ok.
It isn’t always like that for me, any more than it is always like that for anyone.
Two weeks ago my beloved companion Daisy, friend, and dog of 10 years died.  No matter how much I tried to keep it together, there were moments when I was overcome with grief.  Folks I saw those few days following her death shared their gratitude for me sharing my pain…  for simply getting real about it all.
I think authenticity is probably one of the qualities I value most in others.  And I want to “practice what I preach” so let’s get real for a minute or two about what health looks like for me on a daily basis…
I realized quite a long time ago that I was a seeker.  What I mean is that I am a seeker of health and wellness for mind, body and spirit that works for ME.  I am looking for that magical combination of beliefs, thoughts and behaviors that keep me in the health I desire.  And I want to be sure I’m the one defining the goal.
Because you see, I too, have had my heart shattered, thought I wasn’t good enough, had to make peace with a weight I was unhappy with and love my body when it wasn’t even close, worried about a child, agonized over the loss of someone I love, despaired about covering the bills, wanted life to simply be different, and unable to see a way out.  I have been right there, too.
I also have decided that I don’t want to stay there.  I’s simply too painful and so I let my inner seeker help.
I devour books that talk about wellness.  I used to just stick with the typical self-help type.  You know, the title would be something like “how to overcome anxiety in 21 days”.  Now, I have broadened my focus to include books that talk about other religions, creativity, and even ones that describe life through the words of poetry.  Some books I agree with completely, some…not so much…  And, that’s ok.
I explore practices that are a bit out of my comfort zone.  I have learned to meditate.  I always thought that was somewhat weird and unnecessary, but found that it has become critical to managing my days.  I use essential oils, vitamins, an integrative medicine physician, mantras, affirmations, daily self talk, creative projects like vision boards, get out into nature, listen to music that soothes and uplifts, or turn everything off and let the silence feel good, the wisdom of my intuition, gratitude and then more gratitude, prayer…
I also understand how to engage in self-care.  This comes in lots of forms for me.  When life is too hard, I quickly reach out to my tribe, I let life get soft and let requirements slip away for a while.  I lean on those I love and ask for the help I need in the moment.  I cry.  If tears need to flow then I let them flow.  If I need therapy to help work through something further then I go to therapy.  I respond to the need within me.
This has become my practice for wellness.  Some days I get all of it right and it’s like living in the sweet spot all day long.  Some days I miss it completely.  Some days it is a combination of the two.  The most important piece for me has been to let each day be what it is and to be more curious rather than judgmental.  I celebrate the ones that go well and regroup when they don’t.  I love them all.  It’s my journey, my lesson, my life.
My wellness prescription may not be yours.  That’s so ok.
As Walt Whitman said, “…re-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, and dismiss whatever insults your own soul…”.
Write your own script.  Seek your wellness.
You are so very worth it,

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