June 3, 2010

Taking Time

Hello my awesome readers! I'm still here. :)

Up 'til now, Losing My Behind has focused mostly on the physical implication of its title....losing our literal behinds. But, I've always believed that our other behinds, our past, has so much to do with our present, (including where we're at with our bodies)...and ultimately our future health and wellness. So I want to spend some time talking about what I've been discovering lately.

I hope you aren't sighing a breath of dread about now. I know, none of us really relish talking about the past unless its a pleasant stroll down memory lane. We'd rather keep the icky stuff buried in the backyard . . . you know, THAT. That thing from our past that makes us wrestle, bristle, rebel, withdraw, ignore, and deny. We'd rather continue on, pretending that all is well and focus on changing an outward habit rather than the inward belief that is driving that habit.  And what usually ends up happening is that the real life we want to live is blocked, frustrated; the entryway to the life of our dreams has a big ole' sign on it that says "Access Denied".

But I promise to come full circle and offer some hope, so hang in there with me, ok?

For about a year before I was laid off my 9-5, I thought something was seriously wrong with me. I seemed almost unable to multi-task, it took me too much time to process information, my mind which used to be a very efficient little filing system was more a picture of the fallout after a F-5 tornado. Are you getting the picture? I was unable to handle anything complicated...could care less about solving problems unless they threatened to undo me, and found myself saying either outloud or sometimes silently, 'who cares? Who really cares? Not me.'

This 'who cares' attitude just does not characterize the real me...passionate, pensive, lets-make-a-plan me. I was on over-load, big time. Interestingly, it took the loss of my 9-5 job to get me to unwind, and wow, was I ever wound up tight. It was 10 months ago today that I left that job, and its a little hard to believe that its taken me so long to relax ... to stop thinking constantly about my next step and just take some time to attend to my inner needs.

Why do we have such a hard time slowing down?

I have another friend who recently went through something similar. For her, her physical health began to talk back, smart-mouth, rebel. She had no choice but to listen. And, in the course of that listening, I have to say that she is becoming even more lovely than she already was! She has always been such an inspiration to me, but now so much more, more than ever. She has a realness, an authenticity, an honest sweetness that I so want to characterize my own life.

What is it about tough times that has the ability to make us sweet?

So, I asked her one day what she'd been reading ... and then started to read some of those same things. That was my first step into restructuring my hapless days so that I spend time on the things that get me back in touch with who I was created to be and, well, the things that will secure my future.

The future of me physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, financially.

And, hopefully make me sweet to the core. :)

It's all still in process for sure, and there is some hard work involved, but I'm beginning to feel a joy so deep inside of me that I don't ever want sacrifice it again for anything.

What about you? Do you need a time-out? Is it time to regroup, check your priorities, understand better your values, rediscover what you REALLY want, simplify? If so, consider the following list of reads that my friend has recommended:

Freedom of Simplicity by Richard Foster
Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Simplicity by Mindy Caliguire

Simpler Living, Compassionate Life a compilation edited by Michael Schut

Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt

All New People by Anne Lamott

Undercurrents by Martha Manning

The Cloister Walk by Kathleen Norris

Oh, and this friend? She just finished writing her own book on simplicity. She is soooo my hero! Stay tuned for more details.

So, what are you reading these days? Do any of these reads look good to you?



  1. Great post! It took me a couple of months on mat leave before I could let go of the pace I'd had while at work. I love being more relaxed but now I'm afraid of what will happen when I return to work in 4 months!

  2. I read way less than I used to because it triggers mindless eating for me:( But I love fiction, take-me-away stuff.

  3. just to clarify..."undercurrents" and "all new people" and "angela's ashes" don't really have anything to do with simplicity. i just happened to have read them lately. thanks for the shout out and the thoughtful post cheryl. we're all on a journey, yes? it's good to have friends who help us to wake up and remember why the heck we're here. :)

  4. @Gillian I hear ya. So glad you could take the time off...you've had at least one amazing vacation that I know about!

    @Heidi Why, thank you! You and me, girl, climbing this rock-wall together, we'll make it!

    @Karen Hmmm, mindless snacking is a tough one. I have found borrowing books, either from the library or a friend, keeps me from snacking while reading lest I get someone ELSES book greasy/messy. :)

    @Terri Thanks for stopping by! I need to get your number from Marcell and call so we can do that coffee we've been talking about so long :) {hug}

  5. So true - we forget to take time for ourselves and just keep things simple! Sometimes it feels selfish to focus on ourselves, but I found that I can take better care of my family if I'm all good first.