I am extraordinarily lucky. I get to set my own pace in life. Sometimes I have guidelines, budgets, requirements, but always I have choices, preferences and opportunities. We all do, I think, but I am aware of this freedom in ways uncommon to the standard method of living that I see all around me.
That first fortress wall is really quite tight. Well-fortified. Culturally supported and personally sustained. It’s actually a lot of work to keep up with a pace of life not internally driven. Exhausting or boring, I think.
So these walls protecting our images of what we’re supposed to be doing are really strong, but once you start to question them, they fall. Hard and fast in some ways, deceivingly slowly in others. But once you start questioning “Why?” most of the reasons we live dictated instead of creative lives fall apart pretty quickly.
The biggest question, the sand in the timer, is what do you really value. I know people who truly value looking good and showing up in the world as physically beautiful as they can make themselves. That is a lovely way of being. It is of very little interest to me, but I can respect that’s what they’re into.
I know other people who want to be seen as successful, and some that want to have fun. Everyone’s got different motivations. Mine change around a bit, but they’re mostly based on feeling a sense of ease, peace between my ears, function in my body and care towards my family. It’s a pretty simple life I lead. Though sometimes I really want to show up differently in the world. Sometimes I want to be the understanding one, sometimes the smart one – but I’ve got to admit those days are waning. I don’t fancy myself such a smarty pants anymore. I went from thinking i knew everything to hardly wanting to contribute 2 cents to a piggy bank. It’s liberating in a thousand ways, but because I valued that aspect of my intellect and practical application for so long, it’s also a bit disorienting. How am I supposed to show up in the world if not on the rails of my old patterns?
Practices and Habits, right? My habits would have had me show up in what I now consider quite useless ways. My practice is to show up wherever I am as the most grounded and present version of myself that my energy allows and the situation calls for.
There have been a few instances in the last year when I overrode my own autonomy in managing my activities and pace. I felt obligated. I felt it was what someone important to me expected from me. TERRIBLE DECISION EVERY TIME!! Hugely “punch in the nose” bad crap happened. Kindof a drag, but also remarkably helpful in deciding that no matter what folks think, even those dearest to me, I get to live in response to life at my own pace. I wish this freedom, the awareness of this freedom, for everyone.