Warning: Some naughty language ahead!
I woke up this morning feeling fuzzy and unfocused, like a stoned teenager gazing half-heartedly at fluffy clouds while eating a chocolate cupcake, leaving behind a trail of chocolatey cupcake crumbs as she meanders through the spruce-lined forest and tries to make friends with little purple wildflowers.
And no, I’m not stoned. But I do wish I had a cupcake.
For the past few months, I’ve been floating. My feet are nowhere near the ground, and I’ve been procrastinating at record highs. Ah, I’ll get to it tomorrow, I’ll put it off just a little longer.
Well eventually, tomorrow comes. And for me, that tomorrow is today.
And so here I am, lying in bed, feeling all dreamy, all airy-fairy and floaty. All I want is to whirl and twirl in the puddles of my imagination and listen to heartbreakingly beautiful piano songs and not get anything done. I want to burrow under the covers, weave a quilted fort of dreams and make a magical fire of tender poem-like warmth.
But I can’t hide from life.
Unanswered e-mails, work to do and bills to pay are overflowing from my inbox like a thousand goldfish in a tiny pond—stacked and squirmy, waiting for my attention.
I need to get shit done.
But I sit, paralyzed, breathless, teary-eyed and overwhelmed—trying to scribble out my lengthy to-do list, trying to make my to-do’s tangible and practical. And yet, all I can think about is sitting on the couch, watching a stupid rom-com and hearing my kitten purr wildly as she sits happily on my lap. Or, taking a bubble bath and listening to spicy rhthyms from exotic, faraway lands. Olé!
I want to avoid life. I want to avoid responsibility. I want to avoid myself.
But today, that’s no longer an option. It’s time to face it all.
When we refuse to be present in our lives, when we can’t look at ourselves, when we want to hide away and procrastinate ’til the cows come home—it’s time to look deeper.
We need to come back to our breath, let the sweet rising and falling of our chests anchor us in the present moment, and face how we really feel.
Inhale and exhale, just settle in right here, right now. Take three minutes and attend to the most important things that probably aren’t on your to-do list: Yourself. Your heart. Your mind. Your soul.
How am I, right now?
A simple, yet beautiful question. Feel it bloom across your tongue as you ask it aloud. See what comes up. Be open to experiencing how you’re really feeling, to exploring the present state of your being.
Am I truly overworked, overwhelmed, procrastinating—or is it something else? Is there more to the story?
Is there anything lurking down below?
No need to force or push or pull, be kind to yourself—but be brave. Follow the tender trail of your discomfort; it will lead you somewhere juicy. Maybe it will lead you deep inside, to a tender place that aches, that throbs, that stings a little.
Lean in. Don’t untangle the aching, don’t try to make it all better, just experience it.
Breathe with it. Be with it. It will soften you; it will open you.
Right now, I’m sitting in a giant puddle of fear. I’m squirming like crazy, but this is where I need to be. It’s where I have been for a long time—without fully realizing it.
My life is starting to take shape into the life I have always wanted, and it’s scaring the shit out of me. Here I sit, with tears in my eyes, my tail between my legs, wanting to run away. I’m paralyzed, because I can’t face it. I can’t face the beauty. I can’t look at myself. I can’t stand the idea of actually being happy. I’m so used to suffering, I’m terrified to think of what it would mean to experience delicious, heart-bubbling joy on a regular basis.
Sometimes, the reason we procrastinate—the reason we avoid responsibility, the reason we avoid life—is not because we are actually overwhelmed, but because we’re secretly scared shitless of success.
Say we succeed (gasp!). Then we’d actually have to step up and quit playing small. We’d have to stop hiding and stand boldly in the ultraviolet light of our truths. We’d have to finally realize how fucking worthy and beautiful we are.
We’d have no choice but to be ourselves—and not apologize for it one bit.
And that can feel so scary.
We talk so much much about facing our fears, facing the parts of ourselves that aren’t so pretty, facing our darkness—but what about facing our brilliance?
To see that we’re actually not worthless can feel downright crushing, because when we taste our magnificence, something inside us is crushed—the part that plays small, the part that’s ashamed, the part that tells us to shut up and be quiet, the part that doubts, the part that holds us back from truly living.
But it is the most beautiful crushing, the most breathtaking destruction in the whole fucking world when we actually confront the deliciousness that lives inside us.
The only thing that ever holds us back from being brilliant is not having the balls to look at our brilliance.
So let us turn gently inward and face our brilliance. Our beauty. Our strength. Our roaring fire. Our worthiness.
It might hurt. It might hurt like hell, and it might make us cry.
So cry. Let the tears come like a tender, cleansing rainfall.
Stay with your heart. Look directly into your own light. Don’t look away.
Feel a weight lifting off your chest—the dead weight of living in the shadows of worthlessness.
Take a deep breath.
Rise without shame, without limitation, without guilt.
Step into your skin.
Rise up, settle in and face the day. Face all the shit that needs to get done.
Face your brilliance.
There is no need to play small ever again. There is no need to hide ever again. There is no need to avoid life, or run away from yourself.
Because once we confront the unstoppable beauty inside, we will never forget how magnificent we are.
We will never forget how powerful we are.
We will never forget how goddamn worthy we are.
Rise up, settle in and face the day.
Make it a beautiful one—
Just as beautiful
Just as fucking brilliant
As you are.
Author: Sarah Harvey
Editor: Toby Israel