When we need to reorder and life feels like it may break apart…
I remember listening to NASA astronauts talk about their experience breaking through the sound barrier. As they got closer and closer to the breakthrough speed the cacophony of intense sound and vibration was almost unbearable. It felt like the whole ship was going to explode.
And then, as soon as they broke through, everything instantly got still and quiet– like gliding on perfectly smooth ice. Effortless and silent.
I’ve been going through a sticky season right now in life. I’m affectionately calling it a “reordering”– because it’s felt hard, and confusing…but I’ve also had a clear sense that underneath there was purpose and direction to it all.
At the surface, I’ve felt stressed and strained, trying to keep up with old ways of doing things…I kept saying ‘yes’ to things that didn’t fit any longer. I kept getting clear messages that I needed to create more space, simplify and streamline my life– but for a while my life just kept feeling overstretched, jam-packed and chaotic.
It was like a rip tide kept pulling me back under even though I was swimming so hard toward shore.
Can you relate to times when you begin to feel like you’re swimming upstream with a lot of effort and not much movement forward?
Where you’re being asked to shift in some significant ways to find your place in the flow again?
So I’ve been taking a step back to see the larger patterns surfacing. It feels like there’s a reordering happening – like I’m being asked to reassess my top priorities right now and align my life, thoughts, and choices around them to regain a rhythm that feels good and right and peaceful.
I wonder if this is part of the literal season we are in. As we enter the Fall season (at least us Northern Hemisphere folk) the darker, shorter days call us deeper into ourselves for processing and taking inventory of what’s working and what’s not working and asking us to do the hard work of keeping our lives aligned to what we value and care most about.
Part of finding my way back to the flow means I finally stop trying so hard to contort my life to fit the things that are clearly not fitting and I start to take things OFF my plate.
I start to say, I’m sorry I thought I could do this right now, but I can’t.
My husband and I deemed November, Noooo-vember and committed to protecting open times that aren’t booked with Things. To Do. so our minds can stop spinning and we can settle from the inside out.
It means I say YES to a weekly gentle yoga class with my neighbor and say YES to a weekly Reiki session as a gift to myself.
And it means that I begin to honor the magic bubbling up around new WellGrounded Life offerings that want to be birthed but need me to be fully ready to bring them to the world.
I want to hear more about the seasons you’ve had (or maybe you are having right now) when the call to shift, to re-order, to find the flow is getting louder and louder.
What does it look like for you? What does it feel like for you?
How do you make your way through to a more peace-filled, alive, whole place?
Sending much love as we circle around to a new season and new place of peace and plenty in our lives,
I like that idea of a NOOOO-vember! Perfect!
We are expecting baby #3 in about 10 days and have learned – finally – that this is OUR family and the WE need to make choices that are best for US. So, unfortunately to some we may sound mean, but eventually it is understood.
NO we are not traveling 4-5 hours away from home with a new baby for a few days of family for Thanksgiving and/or Christmas. We are done traveling for the rest of the year, thank you very much. NO we cannot have guests sleep in our living room either. I will have a new baby. We can point out the best hotels and find some great deals, but that’s probably it. It’s amazing what people think we want to do without having any idea what life you to be like for them when they had children.
Sorry to vent, but I completely understand the need to take things OFF the table and re-org your life. We are doing that now and have LOVED the results so far. Also, I realize now that people start to respects you more because you are not willing to be “bossed” or “walked all over” after all.
Good luck to your NOOOO-vember!! 🙂
Heather- Yup, I also realized that people tended to respond very respectfully- makes me realize so much of my “over-extending” is simply my tendency to say yes to things that aren’t a true yes for me.
Wow! This was such a clear message I needed to hear this morning as I begin my week already weighed down by the weight of all that lies ahead. I’ve had a major shift in my life in the form of returning to work full time and I’ve been struggling with shifting my thinking from not quite full time to full time work. I know my career and job is what I want to/need to be doing and there are moments when I go “Yes! This is for me!” But then there are these other moments where it certainly feels like trying to swim upstream. I took a good first step by saying no to a church commitment for the spring and freeing up my Saturdays for family time. And I am giving myself as much extra sleep as I can right now as I know that is the best self care medicine I can take as I try to navigate into my new routine and regain my sense of priorities and peace-filled living. Thanks for your reflections and sharing your own journey in this. Its good to know I’m not the only one!
Lacy – Love hearing you are making sleep your number one self care…wise move mama 🙂
No answers. Just grateful for these really really good questions. Thank you, Lisa. Can’t wait to take in the goodness that you’ve shared.
My whole year so far has been like this. A traumatic event at the beginning of the year (we lost our baby boy in the second trimester) threw all of my family into a spin. It has paralysed me with fear and we felt so out of control. But now 9 months later I am becoming myself again. But a new me, a more focused me. One that knows what is important. Me…I am important. My family is important and not much else matters.
I’m so sorry to hear of your loss- I can only imagine the tailspin you and your whole family went through. So beautiful to hear how you are feeling stronger, clear and more centered.
Such a small world… Carrie and I went to elementary school together. She’s wonderful!
I am mama of three (4,9 and 12) a homeschooling mom, and have part time work that I love, and many days I feel like I am “swimming up stream” . I too am trying to restructure, and find time to calm and heal my struggling adrenals and waining hormones. Some days I think I am making some headway and then a “bad Monday” will hit and I want to throw in the towel. Today on my way to work, I begin to think that maybe this discomfort right now isn’t somethng to totally push down or wish away instead it is a “birthing process”. As I transition from mother to wise woman there are things I need to let go and things I need to honor in myself. I don’t know what any of this will end up looking like by this time next year but, I am open, or should I say trying to stay open to the process. And…I want to thank you Lisa for your work and your book Replenish-I use many of your calming techinques on a daily basis.
Eden- Thank you for sharing- yes, moving forward often feels like a dance of forward and backward, inward and outward movements.
As always, your blogs and newsletters ring a bell with me. I’ve gone through a lot of really big changes in the last couple of months (recently moved to a new home, changing my daughter’s school, a new boyfriend, trouble with my ex-husband which now involves lawyers) and I love the idea of Noooo-vember. In fact, I had some recent comitments which were beginning to become a bit overwhelming that have suddenly been pushed off for reasons outside of my control. Rather than be upset, I’m putting trust that they just weren’t meant to be at this time. I’m finding myself falling into old patterns, and I’m going to take November to do some nesting, evaluation and planning of my new years goals and organizing the chaos I feel surrounding my “things” (in my new home) and my thoughts. Nooo-way am I going to take on any MORE. Just going to re-evaluate what I HAVE, and be GRATEFUL for it
Oh Sara- so grateful for you! It really is freeing to reclaim your time and schedule- I am loving my Nooo-vember 🙂
Hey Lisa, thanx for your post and book that I recently discovered.
I feel totally overwhelmed, first child 5 months, new country with a new language, no family or friends around. I participate to some activity with the baby even though I don’t understand so much, but it’s just relaxing to be there. In those situations I feel more clear but when I am alone with my baby sometimes I feel confused, not recognising the priorities and feel like exploding. Does anybody recognise these feelings and have some feedback?thanx from the heart and much love to all mums!
Hi, Marta. I had similar feelings after the birth of my first son. While we weren’t living in a foreign country, we were living in an area without family…good friends but no family. I realized very late into things that I was experiencing symptoms of depression. I just happened upon an article that explained the condition in a way I had never read before as I previously did not consider myself “depressed”. Much of mine were feelings of anxiousness and feeling at constant loose ends. I wasn’t “sad” or “hopeless” as I’ve often hear ppd described. Just something you might consider discussing with your doctor. Take care.
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Hi Lisa. I used to read all your stuff, then took a hiatus…a couple of years, and now, after going to IIN and working on my own, I’m rebranding myself and WOW we have a similar voice 🙂
I went through this same thing in Nov/December. I took things WAY down and actually allowed myself time to sit and FEEL.
I wish I could go back there….rather, I need to figure out how to do it again 🙂
It’s such a struggle for all of us. No one is immune. So much emotion wrapped up in obligation and expectation. Struggles and life shifts will always be there. If we can relax into it and let ourselves flow…rather than push…it may not seem so difficult 🙂
But, that’s WAY easier said than done.
I look forward to catching up on what you are up to! Thanks for this piece. Love it 🙂
I cried as I read your words as my spirit really resonated with what you were saying. For the past couple of years I have felt a shifting, a changing, and a sense that things need to be different. I still feel as though I am in that uncomfortable phase of ‘transition’ since I stopped homeschooling, and tried to discover more about who I am. It feels uncomfortable. I feel stressed. I feel uncertain. I’ve tried a few different things and nothing quite feels like it suits me. I appreciated your words: “It feels like there’s a reordering happening – like I’m being asked to reassess my top priorities right now and align my life, thoughts, and choices around them to regain a rhythm that feels good and right and peaceful.” I am frustrated with not having found the right rhythm that feels that way yet. And being that this has lasted a few years now, I am wondering why it’s taking so long. Some days I fear that I will not find my place in this world, that I will not find my calling. I keep wrestling. That’s what it feels like: a wrestle, internally. Thanks for your words.