Monday, May 28, 2012

Honoring Agitation

I woke up agitated today. I was not sure exactly why I felt so irritated or what I could do to lessen the feeling. What did become increasingly clear as the day went on was that pushing myself to do tasks I found unpleasant was making me feel worse.

I enjoyed a productive day of home organizing on Friday followed by two fun days with friends and family over the holiday weekend. I had plans to be productive again today and tackle some projects I felt were long overdue. However, my body, mind, and spirit had another agenda.  The more I pushed, the more restless and distracted I felt. It was like an internal game of tug of war.

Finally, I surrendered. Taking some time to sit, breathe, move, tone, and notice what I was feeling – to dive into my experience more fully rather than trying to distract myself from it or avoid it – I found a way through the agitation. Listening, I found that my voice wanted an outlet for this tension – and I toned and screamed and enjoyed the release. My body was also begging for more water in this heat – and rest.  My soul craved some spiritual reading and quiet. While I had ambitious plans today for more home organization and cleaning as well as doing some work on my business, my body overrode my mind’s desires and screamed, “NO!” The agitation was a call to listen.

When I slow down to honor that internal “static” when it appears – in agitation or distraction or sluggishness – I always learn something and feel better. It reminds me of that funny one-liner I have heard many times: “When you’re going through hell, remember to keep going.” You don’t want to get stuck in it, do you? While sometimes pushing through seems like the best strategy to “keep going,” often slowing down and really listening to ourselves and how we feel and what we need is more effective.

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