Sep 24, 2020
This year has been crazy intense, would you agree? Being a leader of a large team in the grocery industry, bringing food to the neighborhoods where we live and work is what we’re all about. We have to show up or people don’t eat. Even our curb side pick-up, which has grown by leaps and bounds, is not staffed by magical Covid-averse fairies filling those grocery orders. It’s brave, innovative, and incredibly resilient human beings showing up every day for our communities.
The intensity on my end means being a part of keeping our teams safe which carries with it both a great responsibility and, on many days these past seven months, a tremendous weight.
Since March, with a deep devotion to my daily practices and continuing more than ever to live cyclically, I was feeling pretty unscathed by it all, kind of invincible, quite honestly. And then, last Friday, on my birthday, no less, I hit the wall.
Let me play this out for you as if you were watching a movie of my life. I know you’ve been here before, and I know you and I will be here again, so it’s worth a review for next time. I was planning to take a week off to spend time with my Beloved Partner, my dogs, and nature, things that always bring me healing and deep peace. I wasn’t quite sure I could pull it off with the long list of “to-dos” both on paper and in my head, though.
I had something like 3 or 4 meetings within the course of a few hours, a team member who was recovering from Covid-19 reentering the work force, team members who were out awaiting results of either their or their family member’s Covid-19 tests, and the regular “stuff” of day-to-day operations in my department like a new conversion with our 401K Plan. With all of that going on, my password to the site from which I do much of my work needed to be changed, so I spent forty-five minutes that I didn’t have on the phone with my IT Guy. Thank goddess for this guy, by the way! This isn’t your first rodeo in the world of feeling overwhelm, so I know you can relate completely with how my mind was ping-ponging all over the place.
I remember sitting at my desk that morning and being totally unaware that hours had passed, it was my birthday, I had barely stopped to go to the bathroom, and it was then I realized I had a Teams Meeting. I picked up my phone, and I kid you not, I could not remember how to use my phone. I just sort of went blank as I stared at the screen.
I could literally hear my Inner Wise Woman say, “You’ve got to slow down, Love. You’re in the danger zone. You haven’t taken time off since April, and even then, it wasn’t a full on, vacation as you were still checking e-mail and texting with your team. You need to take next week off and shut it all down.”
Dear Ones, if there’s one thing I’ve learned working with my Inner Wise Woman it’s that when she speaks, I MUST listen. I’ve cultivated a deep and abiding relationship with her over the years, and I knew the power of those words. I took a deep breath and put out the e-mail to my team. This time, I wasn’t going to be “available for questions and support” because every person on my team is so completely competent, they can operate fully without me. So I let that ego trip go pretty quickly. I closed my computer Friday, on my birthday, and met with a few Sacred Sisters on Zoom who witnessed my overwhelm. I expressed to their open hearts and caring faces how I just couldn’t understand with the daily practices and devotion to living cyclically how I ended up in a place of overwhelm. My Inner Mean Girl, was working overtime! “I mean isn’t that why I do this? I’m a spiritual guide for others, how can I effectively guide other women if I let myself go into overwhelm?” They deeply listened and did not offer advice, but instead offered their love and their empty presence as I explained what was coming up for me. They gave me the gift of presence, and this helped me to slow everything down and get in touch with my Inner Wisdom.
Inner Wisdom always says things with love. She can be incredibly direct, yet always with love, not condemnation. What I felt after that call with my Sisters was deeply loved, seen, and heard. The deeper truth that came up from that conversation was, “Of course overwhelm will creep in. Love, look at what you’ve experienced since March. You’ve been in an all-out intensity, and we’re not meant to be in that level of intensity month after month. You need some freedom, Sweetie. This doesn’t make you less of a guide or leader, and in fact, it makes you deeply and profoundly guided and fully engaged in the human experience, which is why you’re here.” With that, I felt like I could exhale and let it all go.
After the call, my partner and love of my life picked up dinner and yummy dessert for me, and even sang a solo Happy Birthday to me. I can always count on this man to make me feel like a Queen. He, too, supported me and my decision to take a big break the following week. I was beginning to feel a sense of freedom, of being liberated by my own self-imposed expectations brought on by our culture of non-stop doing.
As I fell asleep that evening, I felt gratitude in my heart for Half Moon Waning, the time when I make a mindful effort to begin to slow everything down. It’s the time to tie up loose ends, and begin to go within.
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