Spinning Plates

I have decided I should join the circus! You’re probably thinking “wow I didn’t know that was on her vision board.” It’s not. In fact one square on my board has a picture of a man sitting on the beach with his computer watching the waves and my caption says “I am still.”  This is not a common  characteristic for me and I have difficulty sitting still and just being quiet for a little bit. Presently, I see myself in the middle of the circus ring spinning plates on sticks and keeping them all up at once not letting a single one drop. It is getting a little stressful to keep all the plates spinning without a broken one. I think it is time to prioritize which ones I want to keep up and which ones can drop.

I wear a lot of hats of responsibility as I am sure everyone does. These hats all seem very important to me and keep me and others afloat. What I also know ,is nothing is worth losing ones health or mind and there needs to be days and times to let go of some of the hats or plates. Today is a Bye day for me. A term used in sports as a week off from playing a game. I have been on the court playing pretty fully for a steady year now and think it is time for a bye.

This time last year I was in China. I am missing it and remembering how lonely I was and how no matter what, I played full out and stayed so busy I hardly had time to write or rest.  It was a huge growth experience for me and I pushed through fears like no other. I don’t mind speaking in front of groups but at the last minute I was asked to give a speech at the parade, the premier of “Girl Rising” movie and at a classroom of graduate students.  It was a push for me to say the least.

Now I have different demands and requests and find myself pushing through more barriers. Today I woke up feeling weak and shaky. My walk was brisk in the cool misty morning air and I even thought I would finish it with a swim. When I arrived back home I felt weak and couldn’t do much. I actually laid down in my bed at 9:00 a.m. I found myself feeling guilty and pressed to get well so I could get up and get on with my day (which is full of things to do). Instead I decided to write.

How do I make myself “be still”? I write. It is a place of refuge for me and a place to vent. I have a spiral notebook I write 3 pages in every morning where I empty my brain of all the things that clog it up. A lot of it is nothingness, not even worthy of  ever rereading, but it gives me more space to be focused on what is important and what I want to be doing. I read a book 20 years ago by Julia Cameron called “The Artist’s Way”. It changed my life. I discovered writing and a way to take care of myself by emptying my brain every morning with what she calls “morning pages”. It has become my way to be still for 30-45 minutes and to let go of all the “should s” and “have to’s” .

This is my “bye” day to read, write and be still. I have let some plates drop today and I am okay with it. Life will still go on, all will be well and I will be a better person because I am taking time to refuel and let my heart and soul be fed. A good quote by Eddie Cantor says ” Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going too fast—-you also miss the sense of where you are going and why”.  If you are spinning too many plates see what it’s like to let a few drop and slow down.