This week has been full. I’m getting ready to head to Colorado for a week for some high quality sister time (and lots of play time with this little nugget). On top of a short work-week and lots of projects, presentations and social time, it’s been a whirlwind that’s gone by too fast.
Amid the excitement, today looks like juggling priorities and staring down a to do list that can’t possibly get finished in the time allotted. I won’t get into details, but life lately has also been…heavy. Emotional exhaustion is tiring me out, and clouds my vision on what I’m capable of. I have been dragging my metaphorical feet this morning because there’s so much, I’m overwhelmed before I even begin. For example, it’s 10 a.m., and I haven’t done any work yet. (I did find this video of Beyonce’s Single Ladies set to the tune of Duck Tales though).
The thought struck me, though, that there are choices in how to look at this.
Option A: I feel small, and all of these things (tasks, obligations, heavy stuff) feel like they are threatening to cover me up. The only thing I can do is try to swim through—facing inevitable failure, because there’s no way I can do it all. I’m defeated before I begin. It all feels so big I don’t even want to start.
Option B: I’m bigger than all of this. The moment I wake up, the day is stretched ahead of me, fresh and new like a canvas waiting for an artist’s brush. The tasks and obligations and heavy things are still there, but I’m looking at them from up high. I will choose to tackle some of them today, and decide that others can wait (possibly indefinitely). I’ve got this handled.
Your vantage point makes all the difference. The difference is acting from power instead of laying down and allowing all the external things to exert power over you.
And yet, we forget we have the power to change our vantage point. Sometimes it’s as simple as changing your mind.
But alas, simple is not always easy. We forget our power, we forgot how to imagine a new perspective, we forget that all of it is a practice and it’s okay when we fail. We forget it’s normal to have to try again, and we fall into thinking we are a hopeless case.
So here’s my own food for thought today, which I want to extend to you as well, for some mid-day munching:
Think of a problem that is overwhelming you. Maybe it’s an issue with work—too much of it, or wishing you had a different, better job. Maybe you are frustrated with a goal that is not achieved yet, or a schedule that is too crammed full, or an overflowing list of obligations. Maybe it’s physical clutter, or maybe your kids (or co-workers) are driving you nucking futz. Someone is making you feel small. Life has handed you grief and heartache in a goblet, and is forcing you to drink it down, gulp by raw and aching gulp.
You know how it feels when you look straight across at it. You know how it feels like it’s going to swallow you whole.
What would it feel like to stand up, and look down at this? To remember you are bigger than whatever it is, and what feels so overwhelming and all-consuming is, in fact, just one portion of a bigger picture?
What would it be like if just for a moment, you stopped feeling like a frail little bird* and instead chose a more powerful perspective?
What if you believed, just for a moment, there is a goddess warrior inside of you? One who is strong and capable, and has been training for years to meet trials just like this one, to slay demons and defend justice and fix what is broken. She knows how to contain all the grief and overwhelm and pain, and still be bigger and stronger than it.
What would it look like through her eyes? What would it feel like standing in her body?
Relish in this power, and use it for benevolent good. Even if you don’t know how to make the feeling last.
How can you use this to approach this day? What would it feel like to practice having this power more often?
What would it look like to remember you have power?
* Careful! My bones! 30 Rock, anyone?