Meditation: Headspace, Wind Down: Light Visualization Length: 5 minutes Where: In Bed, Los Angeles How It Felt: So relaxing
I was worn out last night. Mentally, physically, emotionally. I’ve been doing too much.
Or maybe a little too much of the wrong things.
I’m still ruthlessly editing my life. It’s fun, honestly. It’s a cool experiment where I’m constantly assessing what feels good and gives me more energy, more joy, more fulfillment, and also what drains me of those things. Then, I adjust, and adjust. The things that aren’t fitting in are more and more obvious every time.
I’ve written before, I didn’t expect work to pour in like this. I just didn’t. I thought it would be a trickle back to normalcy. (Of course, now an IATSE strike is looming, so let’s see what happens, but I do work outside of just screen acting, obviously, so fingers crossed.)
I said yes to a few things that no longer fit into my life. I keep learning this lesson, over and over. If I don’t say no to the things I don’t totally, completely want to do, they eat up the time and energy I have for the things I really want to do. I’m figuring it out. It finally seems clear.
Should we talk about the privilege in that statement? It’s definitely there. I’m aware of it. Being able to do only what you want is a huge blessing. It helps that I’ve known what I love to do since I was basically seven and have been building a life around that work since I was a kid. I’ve been studying and paying my dues and learning and failing and not giving up for decades. Yes, I’ve earned my place in many ways, but I’ve also been gifted Whiteness and American citizenship and freedom from oppressive religions and good health and all kinds of things that got me here.
There is a balance. Can everyone do what they love and say no to the rest? Nope. And definitely not all the time forever- I certainly couldn’t for a long time. I had to survive. However, I do think many of us could stand to be more honest with ourselves, and make less fear based decisions, and find what feels good more often. Especially women, who tend to put all others first and ourselves last.
I’m not saying every day is the day of my dreams, but I’m learning that the cost of saying yes to certain work isn’t worth the financial benefits. I miss out on better things when I let myself become drained. I’m getting better at this. I’ll continue adjusting until I get there.
Life is long. Too long to be miserable when it’s in our control not to be.
Yesterday, I didn’t meditate until bedtime. I desperately needed a solid night of sleep. My husband was sound asleep under the covers, so I joined him, and drifted away to a light visualization meant to relax my body. I slept like a rock. I woke up feeling a hundred times better than I had the night before.
We deserve to take care of ourselves when it’s possible. We deserve to not feel fried and overwhelmed and burnt out. We deserve fulfilling lives, whatever that looks like to you.
One of the best lessons I’ve learned in the past year is to not spend mental energy on things outside of my control. Equally powerful has been learning to actually take charge of the things that are in my control. This is important.
Don’t let life throw you around until you die. Get off the ride and reroute the tracks if you have to. It’s worth it. It really is.