“You need to be meditating,” she says.
I feel myself bristle, instant resentment and a need to justify my actions rising to the surface.
It’s about a year ago and I’m at the end of an—until this point—incredibly accurate and transformative tarot reading. But this last message has me wanting to roll my eyes, argue the reasons why I can’t, why I’ve already tried, and dig my heels in. I’m not ready.
Beneath the initial push back is a feeling of too-muchness, of not wanting another thing to achieve.
And alongside that, a feeling of deep disappointment and bitter resentment at myself that I haven’t yet become the person who does meditate regularly. Who also has a regular morning practice, eats more vegetables than bread, stays properly hydrated and has a calm, grounded nervous system.
That seems to be a version of me I’ve been chasing for years. Eurgh.
So fast-forward a year. Much is still the same. I’ve been moving forward (unfolding inward?) with this theme of trying to be the best version of me, sometimes in quantum leaps, sometimes by a barely noticeable and manageable millimeter.
And, until recently, much of the underlying feeling had remained the same. But what I have discovered lately (or been discovering, because there really is no end) is a fundamental key that has created change—noticing where my actions stem from.
What I have come to recognize is that there are two main pathways of intention that seed my actions.
The first is a path of not-enoughness—of waiting to arrive, of wanting to belong, of believing if I just add the right next step to the mix that is me I’ll magically alchemize and become worthy. Complete. Ready.
This place keeps pushing me to grow, to be better, to cross that ever-shifting finish line.
If I just do the yoga, meditate, eat right, and heal my wounds, I’ll feel enough. But in the meantime, I fail to measure up. Rather than tools for self-care, they become weapons of self-flagellation. I haven’t loved myself well enough today.
No wonder I feel apathetic and resentful about adding meditation (or anything else for that matter) to the routine. It feels like just another thing I’m “meant” to do in order to “get there,” to measure up and be okay.
It’s so exhausting.
The second path, the place I have been recognizing and familiarizing myself with, is one of inherent worth.
Of already-wholeness. Of doing something because I deserve the outcomes, not because I won’t be enough until I complete it.
This internal shift revolutionizes the external outcomes.
When I choose to move forward from this place (and it is a choice, just one that requires awareness, practice, and inner kindness), everything changes.
What once felt like another overwhelming task now feels joyful, playful, loving and fun.
Where there was shutdown and bitterness there is now safety and nourishment.
I am no longer playing the game of self-improvement, but instead I am softening into the space of self-awakening. And this process is not a linear marathon of endless pieces to put in place.
Self-awakening blooms best in the soil of self-love and compassion, of slowing down (internally) and doing things that nurture the spirit.
Not because I have to and am any “less” if I fail to achieve them, but because I deserve the way they make me feel.
Because it was never about the act itself, but the place it was born of.