Rest and Restlessness
I'll keep today's post short, in line with the theme of my day - rest.
It has been a long week full of performances and running myself down to the point where I must lay low for the next few days to recover.
And so, this morning I had a beautiful bath in the sun and completely dissolved into the flow of doing nothing.
It was bliss.
Along the way though, I noticed that I had lot of swirling emotions that I hadn't been giving myself permission to feel recently.
My mentor reminded me that when we stop resisting an emotion or state of being (when we can allow ourselves to feel it and therefore let it move though us), it actually tends to change quite quickly.
e-motion - energy in motion.
Emotions come in waves, they move and shift like weather.
And although the weather can be hard to predict, that it does change is one of the few certainties we have in life!
Since living alone, I have noticed my own reluctance to let myself feel sad. I have a small and persistent fear in the back of my mind that I'll spiral into a deep depression and no one will be there to help me out of it at the first sign of sadness. I'll be lost in a never-ending, greyish-blue, inert malaise. In the past, some amazing housemates would have been there with chocolate and movies, or a teary hug to support me to feel what I need to feel... but how could I do it now, without them... alone???
Sounds rather dramatic, doesn't it? That's because that thought is based on the assumption that the feeling will NEVER GO AWAY.
I do have people I can call that will help me, and I do have support I can reach out to. So, with that reminder and some renewed willingness to ask for help, today (well, this evening), I let myself feel what was there to feel...
Subtly and swiftly, in the last hour I have had quite the journey! I've gone from grief to praise and back again, and am currently feeling more energised, positive and clear, albeit still tired.
Letting each emotion have its wave, with trust that it will change, is a good idea!
Are you making yourself busy so you don't have to feel stuff? Maybe this could help you too.
More breath, more sound, more space.
It only takes 5 minutes to check-in with yourself and give yourself a rest from restlessness. Give yourself permission to feel!
If I could give some advice - go in with curiosity. Don't instantly try to change what you notice. Be interested. If you have a persistent thought, instead of labelling it as wrong, ask yourself, "...what is it about this thought that I like so much I want to keep thinking it?"
You always have a choice in how you respond to the world around you - even to your own thoughts and emotion-weather.
How are you feeling today?
How does that move?
I am going to treat myself to a night of watercolour painting to chill out and do something I enjoy purely for the sake of enjoyment. Ahh... the blissful rest-day continues. :)
In the meantime, I shall leave you with some words of inspiration that I've been remembering all day. They come from a letter, written by Leunig's, Mr. Curly.
It goes like this:
In response to your question “what is worth doing and what is worth having?” I would like to say simply this. It is worth doing nothing and having a rest; in spite of all the difficulty it may cause, you must rest Vasco – otherwise you will become RESTLESS!
I believe the world is sick with exhaustion and dying of restlessness. While it is true that periods of weariness help the Spirit to grow, the prolonged, ongoing state of fatigue to which the world seems to be rapidly adapting is ultimately soul destroying as well as earth destroying. The ecology of evil flourishes and love cannot take root in this sad situation.
Tiredness is one of our strongest, most noble and instructive feelings. It is an important aspect of our CONSCIENCE and must be heeded or else we will not survive. When you are tired you must HAVE that feeling and you must act upon it sensibly – you MUST rest like the trees and animals do.
Yet tiredness has become a matter of shame! This is a dangerous development. Tiredness has become the most suppressed feeling in the world. Everywhere we see people overcoming their exhaustion and pushing on with intensity – cultivating the great mass mania which all round is making life so hard and so ugly – so cruel and meaningless – so utterly graceless – and being congratulated for overcoming it and pushing it deep down inside themselves as if it were a virtue to do this.
And of course Vasco, you know what happens when such strong and natural feelings are denied – they turn into the most powerful and bitter poisons with dreadful consequences. We live in a world of these consequences and then wonder why we are so unhappy.
So I gently urge you Vasco, do as we do in Curly Flat – learn to curl up and rest – feel your noble tiredness – learn about it and make a generous place for it in your life and enjoyment will surely follow.
I repeat: it’s worth doing nothing and having a rest.
Mr. Curly XXX
Yours in Art and rest,