This week has been helter-skelter. I just started working with a new client; am in talks with another potential client; and am helping Jordan respond to numerous project opportunities, all while preparing for SXSW – a whirlwind unto itself. These are all good things – very good things – and so I am trying my hardest to remain grateful amidst the swirl of activity; sometimes, though, all I feel is my heart racing and muscle tension as I spring from one task to the next.
This morning, I realized that the key to calming down was to let go of the drama. Let things be as they are – don’t whip them into a story about stress. Sometimes, we do ourselves a disservice by spending our energy narrating our lives back to ourselves, instead of just acting them out, one beat at a time.
When the yogi in me has the mic, the drama in my life dissipates. As I wrote on Monday, I’ve been experimenting with rolling straight out of bed and onto my mat each morning, and it makes a big difference. It helps me find my grounding before I proceed into my day, reminding me of the power of breath to bring me back to myself and away from the swirly-whirl of Twitter, Facebook, Google Reader, email — the maelstrom with which I must dance in order to earn my living.
Still, practicing yoga is no guarantee that you’ll never get stressed out. The question is: how do you respond to the stress? Do you lose yourself to it, like an addict OD’ing on her drug of choice? For me, the challenge is restraining my inner storyteller — the part of me who likes to spin the events of my life into a narrative, constantly, with heroes and villians, trials and travails. How exciting these stories can be…and how stressful.
Sometimes, a busy week is just a busy week.
I don’t need to suppress my storytelling instincts – just redirect them. Instead of telling myself the story of my stress, I can tell myself a story about how in just a few short days, my workload will die down, and I’ll have plenty of time to rest and relax. It’s not a sexy story, but it’s a reassuring one.
Once upon a time, I threw helter-skelter out the window. Drop-kicked it, even. “Adios,” I called after it, “and please, don’t come back.”
To be continued.
How about you? What story could you rewrite to help reduce the drama in your life?