Life can be complicated and life can also be a bitch… but hey! ultimately life is wonderful! – so we can shake our pom pom’s baby … it’s not all doom and gloom!
I’ve begun to realise this more as I’ve gotten older… just like I’ve also begun to realise that when I’m on my a-game, I can pretty much ride out life “successfully”, by which I mean “well”, as in mind, body, and spirit. Yep, I think I’ve pretty much sussed what I need to do daily now, so that I can function to the best of my ability. Which – trust me – really freaking helps when you’re riding the shit storm that life can be!
But seriously … I’m now questioning if knowing our a-game is really sexy or X-Rated enough? Or, could its PG certification or its “adulting” nature seem to put us right off?! As you might have seen in my last blog, I recently mind mapped my wellness needs because, despite the fact I said that I am doing well and that I believe I now know what I need to, and should do… I don’t always do it!
Looking back on this now though, I do wonder if this was because my a-game seems a little too safe, too PG rated… I don’t know about you, but maybe I wanted an X-Rated version?!
For example, I’ve been thinking and talking about a lack of sleep a lot of late – for all the wrong reasons! – as I know that this tends to alter my perceptions, my moods and my mindset… and this can dramatically change how I interpret and act to “things” (hubby is more than willing to verify this!). All of which usually results in me either upsetting myself, others or simply just making a mess of things! Sound familiar?
So, whilst recently reading Ariana Huffington’s book “Thrive” I found myself nodding away vigorously at the conclusion she drew from research undertaken by the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research suggesting that:
“…sleep deprivation reduces our emotional intelligence, self-regard, assertiveness, sense of independence, empathy towards others, quality of our interpersonal relationships, positive thinking and impulse control…”
Nodding away, mentally ticking all the above, I now see why, when I’m lacking sleep, that I’m sometimes way too quick to blame the “situation” I’m in – for “my dramas” – but the bottom line is, it’s (usually…) all down to ME. At least aging has gotten me to a stage in life where I can at least hold my hands up to that shit!
It’s easier said than done though, I know… but when you do, it’s freaking empowering! Why? I hear you ask… well, put simply, because it allows us to put things straight!
So, for example I was recently having one of those days whereby “nothing”, or so l thought, was going right. I had all “those” thoughts come to me… you know the ones, those that automatically pop in to your head, bold as freaking brass, out of nowhere and these ones got the better of me. Making everything appear black or white, affecting how I felt and resulting in some crappy behaviours. I also couldn’t help but notice that things just kept getting worse, a viscous circle spiralling downward.
Finally, after realising just how much I’d strayed away from my “a-game” I held my hands up, took responsibility and held myself accountable.
I owned up to myself that I was going to bed later and later and eating less than nourishing food… in fact I was eating shit. It was these choices that were making me feel and sleep like shit and yeah, as Mark Manson points out:
“…we all get served shit sandwiches in life, everything sucks, some of the time…”
Clearly, I was contributing to this… serving up the shit sandwiches at a midnight feast?!
At the time, part of me blamed my situation… I was “anxious” and it was this anxiety that was affecting my sleep and my diet and I had no control over it. If this really were the case, I could then justify feeling sorry for myself and complain! Which, if I’m freaking honest… is exactly what I did.
The turning point came whilst visiting a wellness retreat in the Blue Mountains, curtesy of Valentine gift from hubby which, couldn’t have come at a better time. It allowed me to step out of day to day life – including all the social media feeds! – and reflect upon myself, who I was and what I’d been doing of late…
btw: If you haven’t already, I’d recommend you read a great, recent blog post by Vic questioning the relationship we have with our phones…
Anyway, it was at the retreat that my superwomen Lycra came out or… more like, my head came out of my arse! Because, as Craig Harper rightly puts it:
“It’s impossible to see the lesson or hear the truth when your head is up your arse”.
So, with my head out of my arse, my hair washed and my makeup fixed – joking – I don’t tend to wear makeup… it was time to get back on track!?
There was no denying it, I had stopped playing my “a-game”.
I could go into overthinking mode here, but NO! let’s not. That’s how it started in the first place… too much thinking! For now, for whatever reason, let’s just get back to the “doing”. Quite ironic really when you think the act of “not doing” at the retreat was the stark reminder that things needed to be done again!
Anyway, the point I’m trying to make here is that, yeah, the “a-game” is a very simple concept but… that is also its main problem. We can start to see it as just “too simple” and so we start trying to overthink things, searching for more complicated reasons and solutions and that, can simply undo us.
If I’m to expose it for what it really is – it could be seen that the a-game comes with a mundane, boring sticker, almost a PG rating, rather than a sexy, dramatic X-rated one … but hey stop playing the a-game and see how quickly we become X-rated, in all the wrong ways … you’ll get your X-Rated eventually, or a drama king or queen badge?!
So, going back to my bad sleep patterns and poor diet, this is now my PG rated a-game:
- Turn my phone off at 9pm
- Allow for 8 to 9 hours sleep
- Return to daily meditation
- Eat nourishing food, applying the 80:20 rule
- Eat less sugar, experiencing less anxiety in the morning, no brainer, duh!!!
- Drink more, no not wine! Water…
- Catch myself before I start to over think every situation!
It’d be great to see your comments on this perspective… and don’t be shy in sharing your own “a-game rating” … I can only hope it’s been a little better than mine?! … although I’ve been playing by the PG Rules I’ve gotta say that I’m starting to feel a little sexier of late – for all the right reasons – how about you?!
Heaps of love and wellness …