Archive for the ‘self care’ Category

Doing it, dammit…

Did you see that tumbleweed roll by?

Ah, keeping up a blog. It’s a lot like starting a comedy group. After a while it’s like, okay!!! We’ve done all these shows and gotten to perform. Now what??

I have achieved a lot that I wanted to achieve with this blog. I did the 30-day bikram challenge, and I started a meditation practice. (And it sure is a practice. I just started it back up this week). And, it has been super cool to be a part of other people’s processes… My friend Olia began writing every day, and has a wonderful blog, and Jamie created her meditation practice, Rodney wrote songs, Matthew is beginning his novel, Marieleana shared her experience cleansing, and that’s just some of it!

So, once you start a blog, do you keep it up forever? That creative desire eventually starts to fade, like with any project. It’s not like writing a book where there is a clear finish line. But there is this feeling of giving up when you stop writing, and people slowly stop reading. I am so grateful to everyone who has been reading this blog that I don’t want to just slowly stop calling until the other person figures out that I’m not interested. It’s still got a space here in on the web, and I may still return to write on occasion. But for now, the stuff I want to do, dammit, isn’t so much on this blog! I’m playing with lighter fare over on my tumblr and twitter.

I was thinking about the whole “doing it dammit” feeling. And I think what makes it different than just a regular goal is there is this feeling behind it. This feeling of: I’m not putting this off any longer. I’m ready to do this and I KNOW that I CAN do this. That is the heart of this blog—getting to that place about absolutely anything you desire. Sometimes the desire is there but the knowing is not. There is an essence of FUCK IT! to I’m doing it dammit. An essence of Who cares what anyone thinks?? I’m tired of basing my life around my insecurities!

So I am happy to say that I am bringing that philosophy to all areas of my life now. And I know it takes that deep knowing, determination, and desire to really make shit happen. Not because you “should.” Not because it’s “good for you.” It has to FEEEEEL good TO you!!!

And right now, I feel like I “should” be keeping up with this blog. So I’m not going to. 🙂 It has achieved its purpose! It still exists, and will live here with lots of juicy articles, and I still have the imdoingitdammit@gmail.com email address, so feel free to reach me. Now I’m off to do the stuff that feels really good to me, today!



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A couple days after returning from my meditation course, I felt completely exhausted. I allowed myself a couple days to rest…  mostly. You know, besides catching up with emails, voicemails, texts, important Things To Do, bills to pay, etc. etc. Okay, so, a few hours to really rest.

And, Wednesday I discovered I was ill, and it is stress- and fatigue-related. You can imagine my surprise! After going to a meditation retreat??? This is what happens?? So I’ve had to cancel work and all social engagements and am basically spending all my time at home in bed catching up on Glee and 30 Rock. (I just finished Tina Fey’s book this morning. Once she gets into improv, it starts getting good!)

So, I really can only laugh. Because now, I am really forced to relax. I mean, truly learn the art of relaxation. My body has demanded that I rest and only rest. Looking back, I can see how I didn’t take care of my body. Taking my New York habits of “pummelling through” with me to Vipassana did not quite do the trick.

My body never wanted to get up for those 4 AM wake up calls at Vipassana. (They don’t call them “optional” but no one drags you out of bed in the morning. It’s actually your call to make.)

The first two days, I really went for it. And spent those two-hour sitting periods trying to stay awake. I had trouble falling asleep at night so this added to the pain of attempting to wake up a few hours later. The third day, I decided to sleep in. And felt like a fresh faced bunny going in to breakfast at 6:30, showering after, feeling nice & bright eyed & bushy-tailed for the 8am meditation. I felt guilty. Who am I to feel rested? I’m here to work! For the rest of the week, it was a battle. My roommates launched out of bed at 4am to brush their teeth and go meditate. So of course, I should too! It became sketch comedy for me. One morning I went to the meditation hall at 4:30, only to return to my room a half hour later. No one was in there… maybe they still thought I was in the hall meditating! I cozily got under the covers and went back to sleep. Minutes later, not one but two roommates return, preferring to meditate in the room this morning. When I awoke at 6:30, there they still sit–STOICLY, meditating!!!

Another day, I decide, okay—I will meditate in my room! At 4:30 I get up and sit on my bed. I fall over asleep. I feel so embarrassed—it looks so easy for my roommates. Some form or another of this routine follows for the rest of the 10 days.

My body clearly needed more rest. I did not give my body rest because I feared what my roommates would think.

And guess what I found out at the end of the week? They both said that they had the best meditations at 4:30am. They felt the clearest headed. They had more trouble later in the day. I was trying to keep up with the rhythms of someone else’s body, not my own!

Now my body is forcing me to really learn to listen to it. All it wants is rest.

So, after tending very dearly to my spirit and mind, now I tend to my body. I hope that all this is teaching me how to do all three of these things in whatever I am doing. And I must say, my spirit and mind are wholeheartedly enjoying all of this Glee and 30 Rock too.

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Tomorrow I leave for Massachusetts for the 10-day Vipassana course. I remember about 3 years ago a manager at the restaurant I worked at told me he was leaving for a 10-day silent retreat. Now I know what he was talking about. He actually did that right after he quit, so I never heard how it went for him. I’m curious!

I have had a lot of different feelings arise since I first signed up for this course. I don’t want to do it… I don’t want to need it… What if this makes me more in my head? What if I go crazy? I probably do need this… I’m going to be so busy this summer! I definitely should not do this.

I almost cancelled my course reservation, and then I had a conversation with my friend Jamie. (Or, as she’s known around this blog, matthewbrownjackson.) She pointed out that this could be an opportunity to get grounded as I began my wild summer (which includes performing 13 solo shows in Canadian festivals). My friend Olia pointed out that I could look at this as another exploration, another experiment. And, that I could simply enjoy getting away from my day-to-day life for 10 days. And when I spoke to Nisha Moodley, she also gave me great advice: To go into this openly, knowing I might like it, and I might not, and either is okay.

So I am taking all of these thoughts with me as I begin the course tomorrow. I am mostly excited to step away from all my to-do lists, all of my facebook & Internet addictions, away from all my mailing lists and emails to tend to, away from the trains of NYC, the worries over money and everything else. I’m going at this openly, knowing I am fine with it and fine without it.

What I am really hoping is that once I “see things as they really are,” which is one of the main ideas behind Vipassana, I’ll be able to come back to my life right here and enjoy it even more, laugh at the ridiculousness of worry, and be even more present with all the great people & experiences in my life.


Okay, and guess what!! The ultra-awesome, empowering & joyful Stephanie St.Clair (of BLISSBOMED) is going to be writing a guest post right here! I’ve written about Stephanie before. She’s an ongoing source of inspiration and empowerment to love yourself, love your life, and bring all of that juicy love into your relationships. “Like” her on Facebook and get all of her juicy & uplifting thoughts to bring some light into that status feed.

So be sure to check in and see what she has to say. I can’t wait to get back and read it. Or—-go ahead and SUBSCRIBE (to the right of the screen) and you’ll get an email when the post is up! Go ahead… subscribe! 🙂

See you guys mid-May!

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I am taking care of a serious addiction this week. F-Book. (Did you see Social Network? I just saw it. So good!) Actually I hit up all three of my social networking sites: No FaceBook, Twitter, or Tumblr all week. It will be especially easy on Thursday when I am lounging on the beach with ten of my closest friends. So, this seemed like a good week.

I get really stuck in looking at what everyone else is doing, wondering why I’m not doing anything. And then just feeling… bad! I’m glad to not be a teenager during this age.

And perhaps you’ve noticed that it’s been pretty quiet around here. Well, I’ve had a  nice trusty day job for the past couple months! What a great change of pace it’s been. It ends the day before I leave for Vipassana. Convenient, eh? Losing my excuses here to not face my mind for 10 days.

But as much time as I sit on the computer, I’ve done very little writing. Maybe I’ve just been ingesting all the content I’ve been privy to through feeding my addiction and following link after link after link.

I hate that fuzzy feeling at the end of the day. I leave work exhausted from being so involved in my 1000 facebook friend’s lives and following the successes of people who are flourishing in the paths I’ve veered from. Why is it so exhausting to sit at a desk all day? I understand when I am exhausted from catering for 12-hour days ending at 2am, but why also after a kooshy 10-6 day? Someone explain the science, please.

Get thee to yoga! That’s the message I’ve been getting. I had a whole day off yesterday which I spent laying in bed and watching movies. (How did I make it through life without having seen Desperately Seeking Susan? No one told me about Aidan Quinn’s 80s hotness.) Much needed blanking out relaxation.

I miss my practice. It’s something that makes me happy! Sometimes, that blah feeling overtakes and then I have to remember: It’s a choice between getting caught up in what everyone else is doing, what I think I should be doing, and simply doing the thing I want to do.

So today, Sunday, I worked a(n insane) children’s birthday party. Then, came in to work other job for a few hours. Have fiercely resisted the attempt to write “f” in the search bar. (Giving me the chance to discover blogs and websites that interested me… and oh yeah, get work done!)

 And tonight… I’ve got my yoga clothes in my bag. So I have a date with Mr. Hot Yoga Studio tonight! I can’t wait! Looking forward to connecting with something that connects me to… me…

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So my latest self help crush, Gabrielle Bernstein, launched a 30 day self-care campaign, inspired by the New York Times article about the benefits of self-compassion. (By the way, I totally recommend liking this gal on Facebook. All her quotes are refreshing and inspiring. I like the work she’s doing.)

I can get in on this. Lately I have just been doing this by going to bed mad early. I’m talking 10pm on a weekend. It’s been so delicious and I’m creating a go-to-bed routine. This also lines right up with the chakra work I’m doing. Yeah baby! I’m reading Eastern Mind, Western Body. It’s inspiring me to get grounded, to work on that root chakra. Self care is a big part of this chakra, so why not try doing something small for 30 days. I’ve already done energy exercizes, listened to meditations, and had a delcious bagel for breakfast. (Though now I am crashing, as I usually do on bread. But I reaaally enjoyed that bagel. A break from the everyday oatmeal routine).

And the other self-care treat I’ll do today is lighten up. For the rest of the day, I’m lightening up on myself, on everyone around me, and on this whole life thing.


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