Wrapping up our Active Recovery Series here. We’re going to end with Releasing Expectations. Which is a great practice considering the pace and quickness that the state of the world is shifting during these times.
It’s not unusual to have days where it just feels like our whole lives have fallen apart. Everything we’d been working towards, trying to create for ourselves, our families, our communities…
The quicker that one can release, let go, even grieve or mourn a story line, prospected future one thought one had, or the way one thought things would go in our life, the quicker that our nervous system can reset and regulate into the now.
Why would we want to regulate into the now?
We are more capable of discerning what is happening in us and around us and therefore making better decisions for ourselves and our families from this relaxed, calm, regulated state in the now.
How do we digest our grief? How do we let go of what we thought was going to happen when things change so drastically and quickly?
Good Question. I have heard Jamie Wheal of the Flow Genome Project say, “Weep, don’t wimper.”
To me, that means, be sad, cry, let it out, full body shake release of sadness from the bellows or wherever the grief may be coming from for you. Let it out fully. Do not be ashamed.
Another friend of mine shared an experience of feeling a welling sadness over a recent experience in his life, gently grabbing a towel, setting it out on the edge of his bed, resting his knees on the floor, and then just wailing for hours into the towel. After exhausting his full body weeping into the moment he stood up and actually did feel better, relieved, and lighter.
The weeping is like a reset. It may drain one’s energy for the day and that’s ok. In the feeling of being drained can come an opportunity for compassion with the self. If you’re sad, if you’re tired, and you allow yourself to feel it fully, experience the emotion, how could one even expect you to do more than Feel and sense what you notice?
This seems like a tangible first step. Feel the feelings fully. Again, reach out to support when needed. Sometimes we just need another person to listen, to be there, to witness as we’re experiencing these raw emotions. There are even grief rituals performed in groups because grieving alone is releasing, but grieving in groups with others is powerful.
The next step is exactly that… Take the next step! Don’t stay there. Don’t stay in the sadness. Don’t stay in the tiredness. Move. Adjust yourself. Make a new plan. Shift. Adapt.
Taking action is a vital part of the process. Knowing that you can feel fully and then move on, can give one permission to feel the feelings in the first place. Just knowing that it won’t last forever is quite liberating.
Another tip is knowing just because you’ve grieved deeply once, doesn’t mean you won’t ever have to grieve again, or move beyond sadness, tiredness, whatever again. It’s a cycle. It’s part of the process. In fact, again, it relates to the Flow Cycle.
Why would we even want to do all this? Seems to be the question that resonates the most for me.
For me, the Why goes deep within, I feel the Why when I am singing, when I am cooking, when I am walking on the beach, when I am in the water, when I dance, when I am hanging with my family, when I go to retreats, when I take my very own masks off and as my buddy Daniel says, “Lay my armour down.”
Why… Why… Why…?
It’s more than I can actually say. There are no words for the sense of Why other than to lean into the sense of understanding, of being able to make sense, to generate the ability to really connect with another, therein generating the ability to really see and feel the reflection of ourselves. To know and be in love. With the self and the other. To understand what love really is, what love really feels like.
To me, this entire process, yep my Life, has been a spiritual journey. From the days of not understanding why I just didn’t fit in with my peers, to coming to the conclusions that being gay would set me apart for the rest of my life, to drastically losing threads of myself throughout college, to carrying every single emotion and sense I could not or would not allow myself to feel as weight and pounds on my body, to losing that weight through the inspiration of sheer miracles, convergences, signs, synchronicities and true connections, to losing a loved one, several actually, to gaining new things, people and loves in my life, to really taking a leap of faith to chart a new path, to write a new story, to heal, to transform, to change…. Through all of it…
For this, I am grateful.
Where I land now is in a peaceful depth within myself. When I release expectations and let myself.
I had such high hopes for what I was doing. What I might create. What I might get to be a part of. And even the things that propelled this journey have seem to be lost on me now.
A love of a lifetime.
An ability to stand whole and inspire others… I let it all out. I release my own expectations on others and myself.
Letting go, surrendering is,
“A willingness to reset, reset, reset, all day long. And feel it…”
I am not sure where that leaves me now. I am not sure what will come next, as I am sure most of you are feeling similarly during this time. I am sure of what I want and don’t want. I am sure of who I love and who I don’t. I am sure that I’ll be able to discern my way through whatever is next.
I had wished for a different ending to this story. Accolades. A New York Times Best Seller. To become as insightful and calm as a mentor. To be a leader who is heard and listened to…
“It is good to have an end to journey toward, but it is the journey that matters in the end.”
-Ursula K. Le Guin
But I sit here now, with none of those things. Feeling the sadness and feeling the gratiude all at the same time. Because I am sitting here. In me. In myself. Fully capacitated. Fully capable. Fully calm, present and clear.
And that my friends, is the GREATEST gift I have ever received. To be calm, present and clear. To show up and attend when others are grieving. When others are dying. When the way we thought things were dismantle. Through all of it the presence outweighs any idea, any dream, any ability, any creation.
Does this mean I don’t have any more high hopes? Nope, it doesn’t. We already over here making new plans every day. Letting ourselves feel into what might move and what might not. And then, at the end of the day, we let those ones go and start anew.
My hope for you is that during this time, you allow yourself to rest, you allow yourself to hear, listen, feel and move with that still, calm, quiet, mostly silent voice inside, and that you, I, we, all of us come through this with deeper insights, greater connections, and a weaving capacity to move forth together, in the best way possible, serving all of us from the low to the high, from the left to the right, from the sphere we live, attend to and are housed on.
In closing, Active Recovery is an easy and practical way to attend to the nervous system, through the triumphs and the griefs. To gently hit the reset button in a sustainable way day after day.