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Living the Life I Saw I Wanted

After I was immersed in online communities for a long enough time, I began to see there were different ways of being and seeing. I wanted to understand what it meant to be mindful, compassionate, free from anxiety, and looking forward to my future as an artist. I wanted to see my life and my existence in these new ways because, up until then, I had not experienced or ever thought of these ideas.

I have always been a learner and a searcher. And I was discovering entire communities that believed and were living these concepts. These ways of living brought them joy, ease, and hope. And I wanted to be a card carrying member.Living the Life I Saw I Wanted on Shalavee.com

So I hung out and watched, took risks, learned, and got burned. I shared what I was trying, seeing, feeling, and failing at. And year after year, I became part of an immense community of like-minded people. With much trepidation, I led projects that focused on creativity and soul work. I struggled and moved slowly. I spoke my truths and felt heard.

When I finally conceded that all the cognitive work hadn’t kept me from falling into a pit of anxiety, I asked for anti-anxiety meds. This was the pivotal point when I laid down the foundation for all that work to finally stick. My fear was so strong and the pathways so well-trod that none of my work would allow my brain to open those final doors.Living the Life I Saw I Wanted on Shalavee.com

In the months that followed, I started to notice that the quieting of the persistent whispers of fear left space for me to truly comprehend and apply all the learning I had collected. I began to administer compassion to me and my loved ones. I began to be extremely aware of my every moment with my children. Mindfulness was making a whole lot of sense to me. And with all of this, I was building my self trust. The primary component for a sense of ease and hope I have longed for all of my life.

I still have the beautiful intelligent powerful community that I grew with all this time. And I am able to share these thoughts and epiphanies with them and gain new connections with people who are moving in the same directions as me. I believe that I not only belong with these people and they make me a better me, I belong to my easy-going compassionate hopeful self as well.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Holidays without Anxieties Update

We’re in full holiday swing now and the mood is different than ever before. Because I’m different. Backstage at the Nutcracker night, I told the other mothers that I had been an ever-loving mess last year but I’m medicated this year. They laughed but this is my truth; I am a different person this year. And I owe that to making a life-changing decision to ask for medication for my anxieties.

Helping myself out of the perpetual swirling vortex of anxiety is allowing me to be present for myself, for my family, and also for others who can choose this for themselves. As my friend Siri on Instagram chimed in to say it better than I could have,

Holidays without Anxieties Update on shalavee.com

Fiona is all the way on the right

Best decision of 2019. Deciding to finally try meds for the depression I’ve battled for decades. It’s early days yet, and my doctor and I are still fiddling with dosages, but I already suspect that this could be, in the words of a friend, a game-changer. Why not sooner? Because it wasn’t “bad enough” – I was able to function wasn’t I? Because I was sure I could fix it without meds if I could just find the combination of lifestyle choices and cognitive-behavioural tools. Because stigma. Shout-out to Shalagh, whose openness encouraged me to try. Shout out to my wonderful husband and friends and family, who have been steadfast with their support as I start this new journey. Shout-out to me.”

Every change and every choice we make for ourselves has a snowball effect in our lives. When we choose to take better care of us, everyone benefits. And in my case, the holidays are more laid back and my hope is that my children will not inherit as much of the anxiety as we did from our parents. I am setting the scene and the tone for this very special time of year when my children deserve all the happiness promised them.

Happy Holidays to Everyone and I’ll be taking a hiatus from the blog to come back with surprises in the New Year!

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Why is Being Less Anxious a Bad Thing?

For years, I suffered my anxieties. Eventually, I recognized them and set an intention to “cure” myself of them. I tried everything to make this happen. I am perpetually in therapy. I read a copious amount of material on understanding myself, self-love, meditation, and forgiveness. And nothing was truly doing the trick.

A year ago when finally, in desperation, I wisely asked for my doctor to write me a prescription for some pharmaceutical relief from what finally felt like a living anxious hell, I found my way out. I had won and I had lost. Because while I feel 200 % better with no more roaming perpetual anxious dialogues in my head, it wasn’t supposed to be that easy.

I told my therapist, it was like I’d been rowing hard in a row boat race upstream to beat my anxieties and suddenly I was in a cigarette boat and I’d reached the finish line. It felt like I’d won and I’d cheated. My recovery was supposed to be hard won. Easy is apparently not an easy word for me to live by. Why is Being Less Anxious a Bad Thing? on shalavee.com

I think that the neuropathways of the brain can be so worn down in familiar anxious usage that it really is too difficult to redesign the topography. The medicine allows you to rise about the auto thoughts and recreate happier healthier ways of thinking. Yes, for people like me who have struggled so long, we feel the struggle is noble, it seems a cheat. But isn’t the point to escape the anxieties?

I still work on myself in all the same ways I did before. I am focusing a great deal on self-compassion and allowing for my humanity. I am enjoying all the tiny moments that make up my life. I am trying to live meditatively. And I am doing a pretty amazing job of it. Perhaps I just need to forgive myself for taking the easy way out.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

You Can’t Be Your Own Accountabilibuddy

I wanted to think that I could do it all by myself. I have signed up for many tasks that I figured I could handle without anyone’s support. Weight Watchers, marriage to someone who was self destructive, and conquering my anxiety. And in each situation, I was destined to fail. It’s not that I didn’t really want to lose weight, have a marriage that succeeded, or be less anxious, it was just that not everything is meant to be done alone.

There’s an American notion that it’s noble to go it alone. To carry the load and to succeed. And women are equally likely to take on more than their share of burden if not to just protect the ones they love. Of course the innate problem is that then we suffer needlessly alone while we raise children and husbands who are unappreciative and lazy. Ooooppps.You Can'r be your own accountabilibuddy on Shalavee.com

The only way we’re guaranteed success in life is if we have company, community, and accountability against our fears. Because our fears lurk waiting for every opportunity to mess up our best of intentions and our noblest of plans. The first time I did Weight Watchers, I went and weighed in at the local firehouse and I lost the ten pounds. The second time, I did it “on my own”. I managed to gain weight. Picking a marriage partner who really has no interest in working as a team is definitely a set-up for failure and loneliness. I have a partner in my second marriage, raising two children together proves it takes teamwork.

Anxiety is a number one reason why we keep ourselves alone. Afraid we’ll mess up and get ourselves outcast, we sentence ourselves to loneliness in full view by never sharing how we feel with others. But when we share our goals with others, we are super aware that we are accountable to our words. Everyone else would forgive us if we didn’t accomplish what we set out for. But we wouldn’t. And there’s just something empowering about stating our dreams out loud, hopefully to the right person! 

So if this has you thinking that maybe you have been going it lone alone a little too much, entrust something to someone. A secret desire, a secret fear, or goal you are trying to achieve. Give someone the chance to be your accountability buddy and see where it takes both of you.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

What if There’s Nothing Wrong

It’s kinda astounding the amount of limiting false beliefs I’ve been lugging around with me my entire life. I recently spoke about how I am not allowed to want anything. And how my unworthiness was a given. I have basically believed all my life that there is something wrong…with everything and me….all the time. It’s the mode from which I operate. I must fix it/me/them in order for life to be “right”. And then my therapist throws in, “What if there’s nothing wrong?”

Say What?

Oh these pesky therapists!

What I thought about was that helplessness is hard. We’d rather scrabble and scratch, eek out any different outcome than admit that we are where we need to be or, gasp, we have no control. What can you do if you have no power to change something? We can only accept what is. That’s it. Acceptance. And that seems so much harder than changing it? Yes.What if there was nothing wrong on Shalavee.com

What if the fixes and changes we perceive are just the way your world is meant to be. And what it the things you have been leaving alone are exactly the places you need to exert your energy. I do think that we often focus on stuff that distracts us fro our bigger journeys. Our fear disguises tasks as necessary and useful. And we all know if we’d rather pluck our eyeball out than doing it, it probably doesn’t serve anyone, much less ourselves.

I suppose it’s a matter of stepping back, staying still, and having faith more than just barreling along. Being grateful and thoughtful and taking care of that pesky anxiety problem in whatever fashion you can. Because there may be nothing wrong or there may be something that needs fixing but assuming it’s always broken isn’t really any fun anymore.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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