"Boredom is the feeling that everything is a waste of time;
serenity, that nothing is."
Growing up, we weren't allowed to be bored. My mom was a multi-tasking fiend and if we were idle for any reason, she'd whip us into the next to-do before we had a moment's reprieve. Therefore, at a young age, it was imprinted upon me that doing nothing wasn't okay, much less learning how to play.
My mind, as a writer, is also constantly going on. I'm always making notes on my phone about something to write, something to look into. As a lifelong learner, I'm curious about virtually everything, asking questions to people I encounter at any chance I get. I've always felt that this lifetime is too short for us to absorb and experience everything this world has to offer, so that's one of the reasons I do my best to make every moment count.
What's hard about that tendency to be frequently "on" and "going" is the fact that rest is a vital part of thriving, a lesson I've only really begun to appreciate and assimilate over the past few months, even though it's been in my sphere of understanding since becoming a yoga teacher years ago. We need to engage our parasympathetic nervous system to help digest all of our experiences, to replenish and rejuvenate our energies so that we can move forward with greater presence, awareness, and wherewithal. But the slowing down bit? The doing nothing bit? The playing bit?
All of that, those ideas, are hard to practice.
So, one of the only ways up until now that I've been able to do so is to put on a mini-series show and watch it until it's done. Back to back episodes. No break, no gap, just on-and-on. I'll lie on the couch or in my bed and just zone out, feeling guilty and shameful for this method of "relaxing," because in the end, it really isn't that restorative. I'll crash out, wake up, crash out, get up in the wee hours and quickly wash my face and brush my teeth before going to bed. What would be more restorative is walking to the ocean, sitting on a bench at sunset, doing a gentle practice on my mat, but all of those feel like they'd take up more energy.
And frankly, I've always been a little fascinated by Hollywood. That idea of "being a star." I love the story lines, the behind-the-scenes, the fantasy of playing pretend. So, when I find a show I like, the most recent being Nashville, I'm a lil' mini-obsessed. I love music, I love the south, and while I haven't liked country, now I do. I get lost in imagining finding my own Deacon who loves me to the moon and back, that southern gentleman who'll open the doors and respect my heart. I get lost in thinking about being on stage with a mic in front of my mouth, reading/talking/singing/sharing. I get lost in imagining what it'd be like to have a little drama, and then a little resolution, and the play that comes up from being around a crew of people who are all pursuing their passions. The opportunities for living beyond my wildest dreams. That's what happens when I put on a show. It transports me elsewhere.
This Letting LOose Challenge is about accepting that I'm just like everyone else. That I can like mainstream things and not have to judge anything as good, bad, or indifferent. That I also need to check out and that sometimes, the ways that I check out may not be the most healthy in the long-term, but for now, it's a teaser and a preview of learning how to play in other ways that do indeed serve me.
I'm learning there's really nothing wrong with sometimes letting go and being lazy. I had been told for so long that I was a lazy good-for-nothin' girl that I went to the opposite extreme to rectify this false belief. Before, all I was being was being a kid and that wasn't good enough for my parents.
Now, it's about relaxing into the middle. And learning that a better word for "lazy" is "relaxing," however that might look.