Wednesday, February 15, 2012

My Own Brand of Self-Care

There's something to be said about being gentle with yourself.  Being kind, being forgiving.  Even being comforting.  I know all of this, I've journaled about it, I've said I'm going to really give it a try.  But I'll be the first to admit that, if you're like me and this is just not your default setting, it can be pretty difficult.

But I tried to keep this gentleness in mind this morning when things started to feel piss-poor and overwhelming.  I tried to breathe through my stress over some emails and commitments, I tried to take my dog for a walk and enjoy the cool morning and quiet neighborhood, I told myself I didn't need to run today if I didn't really want to, I tried to remember that I really do enjoy hangtime with friends even when its at the end of a long to-do list.  I even tried to meditate.

Yes.  I did.

And when all that didn't work, when the emails still irritated me, when I wanted to yell at my neighbor to keep his damn dog on a leash and not bring it over to mine after I tell him that Finn has some dog-issues, when my commitments were just too much, and -- here is the root of it -- when I heard back that I didn't get yet another job, one that, while it had it's own set of problems, would have been a great opportunity for me, I broke.

I threw meditation out the window (it wasn't working for me anyway, in part because Finn thought that by mama sitting on the floor it was time to play with his ball), bailed on one of my commitments (I'm lousy company right now), laced up my shoes (since I couldn't not run when I said I would and bear one more self-disappointment today), got my loud pop/punk girl music on (i.e. Paramore, The Veronicas, Hey Monday, etc.), and tried to exhaust the frustration out of my system.

Why loud music and running helped me when nothing else could this morning, I don't know.  Maybe when the music's loud I don't have the brain space to worry anymore without giving myself an aneurism.  Maybe when I'm running I'm so concentrated on not falling on my face that there's no room to focus on the stress.  Maybe it's endorphins.  Who the hell knows? 

But I think I've figured out that this is how I'm good to myself.  This is how I'm comforting.  Loud music, physical exhaustion, that works for me.  It may not be gentle, but it's its own unique brand of kind, I guess.  And, hey, I'm feeling better now.  Not 100% -- I didn't get the job, after all -- but at least I'm not so down anymore.

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