Taking a Break

OK, OK. So the first thing you’re going to realize is that this blog post has been shared on social media. And here is a whole blog about taking a break from social media! IT MAKES NO SENSE … or does it?

I have been feeling at a loss lately, with the new year now just a couple days in. So many people I knew and loved were undergoing big, beautiful changes in their lives. And yet, I felt stuck. I already made big changes, having sold all my stuff, left the small town I was living in and loving, said goodbye to so many wonderfully supportive friends. I went

goals
Buddha says, our problem is that we think we have time. Unless we are a zombie. Didn’t think of that, did ya Buddha?

sailing, traveled and lived in places I couldn’t have imagined just a couple years ago. But now what?

So often, when one completes a major project – like organizing a wedding, getting ready for a baby or making a move professionally – there’s a bit of a letdown when it’s all over. We did all this busy work, and here we are: still in our own skin, still looking at ourselves in the mirror.

Four years ago, a five-point personal plan came to me during meditation. I was working for a small government agency that was up for referendum. It was a make-or-break vote, and it was my job to get it passed. No pressure, right? I realized that if, due to the will of the Gods, it didn’t pass, I would be personally and professionally destroyed. I couldn’t let that be. (It did, by the way!)

So I created a plan to create skills and set myself up for success. First, I would renew my real estate license. I was debating it, but I figured what the heck. That was easy; the 40-hour class was completed online over a weekend. Next, I decided I would become a Reiki Master. I had worked with Reiki energy for about a decade at that point but only at the second of four levels. I was being called to teach. Along those lines, I decided to get my Yoga teacher certification. Step four: “Something with food.” I decided to try veganism

planning
My 5-Point Plan of 2013 looked absolutely nothing like this. And I look nothing like this guy. So there.

and am still interested in returning to this challenging diet and sharing vegetarianism in a meaningful way. And the final step was to figure out where I wanted to move, and move there.

Done and done. I am a Reiki master, Yoga teacher and marketing professional (The real estate? Not so useful) living currently in the Virgin Islands. I’ve catered vegetarian dinners and committed to intermittent fasting for the last 10 months, and it’s helped me feel better and heal my relationship with food. So, now what?

I started asking myself this in meditation again, and I have discovered – in spite of renewal that comes from working for myself and teaching Yoga – I was exhausted. I was exhausted from trying to create psychological breathing room for myself. I was exhausted by creating a carefree façade for my well-meaning friends and family. I was exhausted by the challenging, alternative lifestyle I had chosen for myself. I needed a break.

Even as it allowed me to connect with those who loved and supported me, Facebook was just not helping. I was endlessly confronted with people gloating about the election or, from the completely other side of the spectrum, happily ignoring politics as they showed off their beautiful, loving families. So many of my friends got married, got engaged and had babies this year. I’m truly, truly so extremely happy for them.

But as studies show, Facebook was giving me an opportunity to compare my B-roll with

sadness
When the most meaningful interaction is a frown face emocon. Ouch.

everyone else’s A-roll. And I’m sure others felt that way about my news feed. I felt like a fraud, acting completely happy because I was expected to. Crying a snotty mess during a fabulous deep tissue massage last week, I knew something big had to change.

So I made a move: No more Facebook. I shared my contact information (It’s thelovelightproject@gmail.com! Connect with me!) and took the app off my phone. I’m simply not checking it any more. As a marketing professional, this feels weird, but stepping out of the comfort zone is exactly what helped propel me into the next stratosphere of life last time. Hopefully it will be the first step this time.

With the time I would have normally spent checking social media, I am starting to create other plans for 2017. I’m going to do things that bring me happiness: writing more, cultivating my independence, doing more Yoga and meditation, rediscovering my own power. I am hopeful that by making space in my life, releasing myself from my own news feed of life, I will increase my capacity for good – for everyone, not just me. Then perhaps my break will, in turn, bring more happiness to others. Now that is a resolution I can get behind!

 

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