Sometimes growth can be overwhelming. I always try to take life in small steps. I have always been told if it seems too hard it’s not the next step. And most of the time it really works. It’s a loving way of growing – spiritually, mentally and physically.
Imagine if you took one little step toward your dreams every day. That’s 365 steps a year. I once visited a temple in India that had 500 steps leading up to it …I can tell you, that’s a lot of steps! (see picture – that’s the actual staircase) Taking them all at once is a daunting journey. But just taking one is nothing at all.
Maybe it’s the research of which school you would like to go to, maybe it’s creating a vision board of your dream life. Either way, if any step seems daunting, it’s not the next step. Then divide it into smaller steps. We have a tendency to rush to the edge of the cliff and yell “I can’t jump! I can’t!”*. It’s a refined form of selfsabotage to make our dreams so big and monstrous that we give them up all together.
Recently I have learned on a real and basic level how much I can accomplish if I always put self love first. If I don’t push through. If I don’t over-do.
However, I have been in situations – and was in this lately – where the next step really was a big and daunting one. And one that needed to be thought through thoroughly. It couldn’t be taken lightly. The one step that was to “quit your day job”. I did all the little ones before it, like call my friend who had been in a similar situation and ask her how she did it and when she knew it was time. Like ask for less and less hours at work (God bless them, because they actually needed me to put in more time). And finally I just had to take the plunge or I would work myself to death. Ready or not. Sometimes that is the case and we just have to deal with those so-called big steps as gently as we can. Careful what you ask for, right?
I spent a lot of time taking care of myself in this time. Because what happens to me when I spring growth upon myself in such a daunting, fear inducing way is I start running into problems or disasters. Some may call it coincidence and not believe in that stuff, and that’s okay. I call it noise or Upper Limits. I really do believe that we hit a limit that is somehow internally set in us for how much growth we can handle at a time. Or you could even say how good we think we are allowed to feel. That limit hits on those big steps because it’s a limit that is moved and exercised in time with self care and gentle growth. I will blog about this theory another time.
So I ran into major car problems for a full month and was sick as a dog for two weeks after that. It wasn’t until July I found my foothold and could concentrate on all the shows I had booked for the summer. By then I was so behind on the planning and logistics of them that I could barely keep up. But in stead of working myself into the ground I decided to simply take care of myself in my limited free time between shows. I would do one or two things each day to try and keep up and then I would lay in the sun, read my books or cook – something completely unrelated to music. A few things went haywire, but all in all no disaster struck and in the meantime I was trying to make sure I didn’t invite any more upper limits into my life.
When September hit I was moving like molasses. It was like I fell off a cliff. But slowly I got back on track and now I am back to taking one little step at a time. I feel rested. Energized. Creating new routines in my new life. And ready to take on the world once again. Now at least I know what I am getting myself into next summer.
Maybe there were smaller steps for me to take back in the spring, but I couldn’t see them. So I did the best I could at the time. And now I thank God every day for being able to take the small steps again!
*Thank you for this one Louise Hay