This morning I was startled awake by a text. I forgot that I was supposed to help a friend. Luckily, he forgot also. He was wondering if I was still available to pick him up at the auto repair shop because it was going to take about an hour for the car to be repaired and did I still want to have breakfast to pass the time? Now...anyone who knows me well knows that my day starts slow and the hour of coffee is sacred but I wasn't going to let him down so I threw some clothes on, hopped in my car in the pouring rain, and headed out while still waking up.
Well, breakfast turned out to be three hours because the car took a lot longer than expected. I returned home after 11 AM realizing I hadn’t even started my day.
Before I go any further, I want to make it perfectly clear that Monday is my "admin day" which means I don't particularly have anything scheduled. I leave this day open for client scheduling, writing, planning, calls, ets ....but despite this, the day got off to a weird start. So what did I do? I went straight into the auto-pilot response system of the old, almost-but-not-quite forgotten patterns. I can feel the anxiety rising up around the edges as the critical little voice gets revved up, ready to taint my day by pointing out nothing has been accomplished and it's almost noon, as if to imply the day is practically over. Of course, it's moments like this when I also notice that there are things “out of place“ in the house and the little voice tries to convince me the whole house is a wreck and that's where things can really start to spiral...if I let it. Do any of you find yourself in these types of conversations with yourself?
Negative self-talk comes in countless unwelcome voices, spouting self-sabotaging messages of various shapes and sizes from insidious to colossal, ready to ruin anything... if you let it.
But I don't let it spiral because I am aware of her and her toxic chatter. I've also learned I can turn her volume down and take an honest look at my day. Truly I had two things I'd planned for my morning: wash the dishes and take a shower, but I am out of conditioner and dish soap. That figures. Okay, three things. So, I get back in the car and head to the grocery store, reminding myself it isn't even noon. I got this. It's all good, I tell myself as I walk the store aisles. Items in the basket now: a roast (because I might as well consider dinner), dish soap, conditioner .... and then there it was ~ the standout product on the shelf ....BUBBLE BATH. I was immediately overcome with the calming feeling of being surrounded by hot water and bubbles. Yes, I brought the bubble bath home and just like that... that little voice had no more power.
All right, let’s start over… Here is what really happened today:
This morning I met up with a very dear friend for breakfast. We sat for three hours enjoying each other’s company, talking and laughing about our favorite subjects. He thanked me for entertaining him when he would’ve otherwise been bored and stuck in an automotive center, and I drove away so grateful for the unexpected gift of time together. I got home at 11 AM realizing the day I had created an expectation around, no longer existed. I acknowledged the tension of this and kindly asked myself what I needed to do to re-prioritize my day. One quick errand yielded a bubble bath and a total reset.
And a gentle reminder that those little voices that aren't helping us live our best lives have a volume button. Self-empowerment is knowing it's okay to put her on mute.
Registration is open now for our Spring Weekend Retreat on Lake Whitney. We'd love to see you there. :)