If you’re reading this, it’s likely that you are interested in looking inward. But how do we make time for this, especially in our busy world? And how can we justify this attention?
I remember being at a New Year’s Eve party maybe fifteen years ago—most of us were in our early thirties, beginning to solidify our adult lives.
We were going around in a circle, saying what we wanted to focus on for the year, and one friend said, “This year I’m going to focus on myself more.”
He meant his statement as a joke. After all, he was a struggling to be in a serious relationship, and part of that struggle was to listen better, to not always put himself first. He thought it was funny to suggest that he’d be more narcissistic.
But I wondered whether, in fact, what my friend really did need was more attention to himself—just in a healthier way.
We live in a culture that often cannot distinguish between healthy and unhealthy self attention. A narcissist focuses on his outward needs, appearances and gratifications. Blocked from his own inner life, a narcissist doesn’t recognize the inner lives of others; this is dangerous for the narcissist and everyone else (and yes, this is relevant to contemporary politics.)
Healthy self attention, by contrast, is being able to be with oneself, with whatever arises, with curiosity and compassion. This attention actually makes us more available for others, more present in our lives and more able to be our best selves.
But because many of us associate self-attention with narcissism, we don’t know how to focus on ourselves in healthy ways, and so we miss out on a chance to really know ourselves and to wake up to the great miracle of who we are in the world.
In fact, many of our blocks—in life, in our creativity, in our relationships and at work—come from the ways in which we cannot fully be with ourselves.
And many of the imbalances in our culture come from our inherited discomfort with ourselves.
What would happen if you took more time to get more comfortable with yourself, to sit, to listen, to tune into your creativity, to attend to your body, to move, to relax, to wake up? What would it be like if you could justify taking the time and energy to do that? Even if you’re a regular meditator, are there parts of your being, your wholeness, that you’re overlooking?
This week I’m offering you a short meditation and writing prompt that invites you to come into your light and wholeness. It’s guides you through a five minute meditation and ten minutes of writing. (Go to the bottom of this email)
And please join me for some of my upcoming events, in which I offer a variety of ways to get through whatever is blocking you so that you can come into greater wholeness, creativity and energy. Because paradoxically, when we take the time to be with ourselves, we end of having more time, energy, spaciousness and flow for everything else in our lives.
Next week, August 4th I’ll be leading a three hour Writing Through Blocks workshopat Grub Street. https://grubstreet.org/findaclass/class/writing-through-blocks/
The weekend of August 18-20 I’ll be leading a full weekend retreat on living from our center, designed to nourish you through writing, yoga and meditation.
And my online course Align Your Story, also designed to nourish you through writing, yoga and meditation, is open for enrollment, and now, when you sign up you get immediate access to the course. (See the link to the newly designed page here: www.alignyourstory.com)
See more events below and, as always, reach out just to say hi or with any questions.
Align Your Story Course
NEW POLICY: when you enroll in the class you have immediate access to the online material so you can start this summer! Conference calls will start again in September.
Writing, yoga and meditation course to get through blocks, integrate mind body and spirit
and give you tools to write what you want—and need—to write.
NOW OPEN FOR EARLY BIRD DISCOUNTED REGISTRATION.
Writing Through Blocks
Friday, August 4th 10:30-1:30
Grub Street, Boston
Living From Your Center: Integrating Mind, Body and Spirit
August 18-20 Full Weekend Retreat
Copper Beech Institute, West Hartford CT
Treat yourself to a full weekend of self care, integration and growth
with writing, yoga and meditation.
Writing and Kundalini Yoga Workshop
August 30th 7-9pm
Beverly, MA (more information to come)
In Person Writing Workshops:
Fall 2017. Cambridge, MA
Reach out to me for details and to reserve a spot. Classes will fill fast.
Where the Social and Personal Meet
6 Thursdays, from 10:30-1:30 starting September 7th
Grub Street, Boson.
Appropriate for writers of all genres.
MEDITATION AND WRITING PROMPT
I blog about creativity, writing, yoga, meditation, justice, women, the environment and integrated well being for the individual and society