Happy Sunday, friends!
What I want: Building from Friday’s revelations about Struggle, I want to find a new way to consciously engage with work
How this could work: It’s obvious that this will have to contain:
- Building up from the ground floor
Because those are all the things I need work to be defined by if I am also struggling with other more personal stuff and lack the energy for a full-on work assault.
And it’s quite obvious that I have to be willing to let go of the systems that have been working. As Havi says, what got you here might not be what will get you there. I don’t know, maybe my What and How lists will help, but then again maybe they won’t. Maybe I will find a wholly new and surprising and joyful mode of working.
My commitment: To continue to notice the Resentful Zombie that tries to take over when I don’t build in enough rest. To find yet more opportunities to slouch in my comfy office armchair and scribble in my notebook. To do really complex Shiva Nata when I arrive in the morning, if that’s what it takes. To buy bubbles (I said I would do this weeks ago!) to play with when I’m bored. To find ways to bring the playfulness and restfulness and easefulness of the Rally flow into my everyday flow.
To take notes about how I have built the day, and see what works. To not be slave to any one pattern for too long, lest my brain get suspicious and weary of it. To call on my allies and get up and about and enjoy the beautiful outdoors of the campus, too.
II. Travel excitement!
What I want: I am traveling to Boston for my good friend Liz’s wedding in ONE MONTH and I have not done a single piece of travel preparation for it. Ye gods.
How this could work: I could write a list of all the things that I need to take care of. I can talk to Liz (which I need to do anyway) to find out what resources I can use. I can work my thrifty airplane magics! I can set a timeline for when all the important stuff needs to be done.
My commitment: To not get into a mindset of panic regarding the airfare. It simply will be bought, end of story. To not worry in advance about getting on the airplane — that is a worry for another day. To not worry in advance about leaving the baby for four days — that is a heartache for another day.
To find playfulness in the planning! To let the excitement for the wedding make everything else fizzy and sparkly and exciting!
The work thing is a big thing. It’s going to take a lot of dedicated gentleness and noticing and re-centering and re-re-centering to help that happen. So there are only two things this week — the real big Work…ness thing and the Travel thing.
Report on past VPAs:
Well, shucks. Thing One on my last Very Personal Ad was also about making work work. So this is something of a theme. Last time I set intentional plans for calendaring, decorating, rest, and making new patterns. Some of these things have happened and some haven’t, so that is why I am still trying to find the right approach.
Thing Two was to find some insights in the matter of Oogly Boogly Swamp Monsters my parents’ messy divorce. And you know what? I did. I wrote about the Fixing Instinct (and ignoring it), which is a big part of it. And I did some other thinking and processing about it. And while things are not superhappyawesome on all fronts, I have the feeling I am less animated by fear, now. I’m figuring out my boundaries more and more, and enforcing them, and not letting it be scary.
Thing Three was, oh boy, the Burley bike trailer. I am working hard on this one. I don’t think it’s quite ready to be born yet, but it’s coming soon and it might just surprise us! I’m waiting and watching patiently.
So I wouldn’t say my last VPA is really resolved! Ha.
Perhaps what is really missing is that I set some truly great intentions when I write my VPAs and then I don’t tend to spend much time with them. Sometimes I accidentally do it. But I don’t think I ever realize hey! I’m working toward that thing I said I wanted! There just isn’t a whole lot of joy involved. That doesn’t feel right to me and I think it’s something I need to build into an intentional part of my day. Perhaps similar to my What and How lists, I could have a running list of Wishes Please and I can look at it every day.
One thing that strikes me about the whole practice of Very Personal Ads is that if you just wish for things and then walk away, you’re not really engaging with the spirit of the thing. Or not fully. It’s not that I believe wishing takes work, but that I believe in spending time with my wishes, continuing to think about them, continuing to let them help me bring intentional focus to my work and my rest times, you know? Perhaps I’ll write more on this next week: what does the ritual of wishing look like every day? Not just at special times?