Autobiography · Personal Development

Step

“Promise me you gon’ shut the fuck up and recognize what you holdin’ ain’t really broken.”
–Aesop Rock

I know I’m slipping when I start to point fingers. When I make up excuses. Tell myself life would be different if only this or that. Little structures are built up in my head and I cannot move around them. Can’t seem to move forward. Make progress. Focus my time and energy the way I want to. It’s just because work, relationships, sleep. There are hundreds of people, activities I can peg my shortcomings to, but eventually it has to come back to me.

So I take a step back and tell myself honestly what it is I’ve made important. And I ask myself if it’s the right things. The things I want to be a vital part of me. Priorities are so often created without any input from my logical self. Without any input from me at all. They seem to conjure themselves out of a few days of bad habits and a poor night’s sleep. Before I even started paying attention to what was happening I hadn’t been exercising regularly for close to a year. Hadn’t even gone grocery shopping this month. I found myself floating again. Living unintentionally.

There are few things as frustrating as realizing you haven’t been paying attention to your existence. Fell asleep on the couch and woke up with the upholstery imprinted on your face, drool down your cheek, and no idea what day is it. What happened to me? How is September over halfway over already? It’s almost Q4 and I haven’t made real progress toward anything. And it’s not because I’m heartbroken. And it’s not because I don’t have time. And it’s not because I’m tired and in love and devastated and vibrant all at once. It’s just because I failed to notice my life in front of me.

My life is not a disaster. I am not broken. This is not what treading water looks like. This is simply letting go of the steering wheel and seeing what will happen. We never accidentally turn into the people we want to be.

Stop pointing fingers. Stop blaming a lack of forward motion on anything or anybody but that person you haven’t been paying attention to in the mirror. She still wants the same things she did before and she’s really starting to wonder why the fuck you’re not listening.

Photo courtesy of Hannu-Pekka Peuranen.

9 thoughts on “Step

  1. So easy to get lost in the daily business,
    The distraction of the news,
    So many seeming necessities.
    Time slips
    An hour
    A day
    A month
    Like those times we go into a room
    And stand, bewildered,
    Asking the intention
    For which we came.

    Thanks, Ruby

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Can’t remember who said it and where, but something along the lines of ‘there comes a point when not doing anything is also a decision’ – could be as simple as pushing the limits of self-sabotage.

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  3. I liked this phrase, “Living unintentionally,” because I like the implication of its opposite: “Living intentionally.” I like the concept behind that. Such a powerful mission statement in just two words. That’s how I want to always live.

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  4. It seems that my automatic default is to blame and look for the reasons why I am feeling the way I feel, why everything is so much of a struggle. I blame other people, transient circumstances, and I say, “If only I can fix THIS” or “Once I am through THIS it will be better…” But it isn’t true. Like you put it, “eventually it has to come back to me.” Trying to turn off the autopilot and live deliberately and intentionally is so hard. It’s impossible to consistently be mindful, deliberate, and intentional 100% of the time. When I realize that I’ve been slipping, my first reaction is to get angry with myself, but I know from experience (and the “experts”) that beating myself up won’t result in the changes I want to see. So, I have to be gentle and compassionate, even though I want to be strict and severe. I hope that you can make the changes that are important to you and realize the person you were meant to be, living the fullest life possible. That is my wish for all of us! It will never be perfect, but I think that slowly, we can make progress.

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