Finding Your Center Through The Cycles of Life
Time for some truth and transparency. I am not always the most stress-free person. I often have moments of anxiety and worry. Other times I am on the extreme end and just want to leap off the edge of a cliff and live life by my own standards. Finding my way back from either extreme has not always been easy.
I listened to The Modern Brown Woman podcast a while back on an episode about polarities. You can listen to that episode here if you want to learn more about it. Two takeaways for me were recognizing what my polarities are and how to know when I need to shift my energy and find my center again. We can't and won't always be able to live in that center place but we can recognize it and make our way back.
Part of that process for me is reflecting on past events and feelings. While social media can be a distraction at times it can also be used as a tool to reflect. Some times I go back and scroll through my Instagram post or Twitter feed just to see what I was thinking at different times in my life and to see my progress over a specific timeframe.
Often I find moments of life with family and friends that make me smile. Other times I find encouraging words that I left as a reminder to myself when I am not feeling my best. This morning as I was scrolling social media accounts and found this Instagram post from November of 2016.
Although on this day I had found my happy place I still continue to have ups and downs. It's part of life and part of being human. The key is to not stay there and recognize when you are allowing other things or people to take you out of that space.
It is my daily habits that keep me as close to the middle as possible. While I may not do each of these every single day, I do turn to this list of things to help me focus and find my center.
- Practice gratitude - Whether you write it in a journal, planner or make a post on social media about it, taking time to remember the many blessing of life. This practice is important for keeping a positive perspective. When you are having a "woe is me party" for one, look back at your gratitude log and read through all of the good in your life. It's a great way to pull yourself out of a funk.
- Journal or Braindump - Get out of your head! Get everything on paper and release it. Journaling has been something I've practiced since I was about 10 or 12 years old. Back then it was just me writing out my feelings in my diaries. However, with my current responsibilities, I don't always get the same quiet time to just write and reflect. This is where the braindump comes in handy. I will free write everything I am thinking, need to do, don't want to forget etc... Once I write it all down it clears my mind and allows me to focus on what I need to be doing most, in that moment.
- Prayer and Study - This really should have been number one. I turn to my bible, my faith and The Most High whenever I am feeling uncertain, stressed or anxious about life. Searching the scriptures and finding out what He instructed and the promises He has for me helps bring me back to a place of peace. It isn't about me. My feelings are definitely not always facts. Taking time to get quiet and listen is the best place to start.
- Yoga & Meditation -This is something I have picked up recently but the way my life is setup, I don't always get to go to the classes I signed up for. Yoga is a great way to de-stress and release a lot of tension and negative energy. I have been going to classes here locally hosted by a friend BlackGirlCalm. Right now she is doing a #30DaysofYoga Challenge for the month of September. This is a great place to start if you want to learn yoga. I am joining the challenge but haven't posted my pics yet. Stay tuned.
These are just a few ways I find my center in this very noisy world we live in. Other things I do are listen to music, audiobooks, and podcast. Taking time off to just play with my kids and watch movies with my husband. Laughing with friends or doing creative things that bring me joy. Oh yes, and affirmations are amazing. It may feel weird at first but they work.
Make yourself a list of things that make you happy and ways you can find some solitude when life gets noisy or stressful. Put it somewhere that is easy to find and refer to it often.
Time doesn't heal all wounds, patience isn't the act of doing nothing, busy isn't productive and life is not meant to be perfect. It's meant to be lived, over and over again. For me life is cyclical. It is the ebbs and flows of joy and sadness, inspiration and procrastination, fulfillment and searching for purpose. While you are on these different cycles of life use these tool to manage your way through them. Take note of what you learn and apply it and marvel at your growth as the next flow comes around.
What are some of the ways you find stillness, balance, harmony, your center or whatever you call your place of peace? Let's talk about it here or leave me a comment wherever you prefer to live on the web.