Pausing, resting and noticing

On Thursday this week I opted to sleep in instead of blogging. Since I’d had some insomnia on Sunday (slept 2 hours) and Tuesday (slept 4 hours) it felt really good to get 10.5 hours of sleep. It was really good, juicy sleep. I know that I dreamed, but I did not write down my dreams right away, so they faded quickly. But the sleep felt cleansing and nourishing, so I know my psyche was working out whatever needed processing.

I was fortunate to be able to work at home so I had some “think time” in between my conference calls. I took a little extra time to meditate, and to work on planning during my quiet time. I wrote in my journal. It is a handwritten, old-fashioned sort of practice for me. It is a way I slow down my brain long enough to process thoughts and feelings, to pay attention to what is going on in my body.

Our bodies can provide a necessary “compass” for the messages in our soul, but so often we forget to observe our reactions as a visceral process. We are in go-go-go mode, always trying to learn something new, read another book, listen to another podcast or audio book. I certainly love to indulge in all of these “treats” as I think of them. But then I need to allow for it all to settle, and for my personal truths to emerge.

As I tuned into my body’s messages today, I discovered I do not want to go to Boston in May for a trip to a conference that is typically an annual event for managers on my clinical research team. The week after that trip I am scheduled to travel to Belgium for another meeting. Then I am planning a trip the week after that to Mexico, to work with a colleague to help orient and train a new team member.

First off: three trips in 3 weeks is an easy NO for my body. More like a “shit NO!” if you pardon my French…  Is it that Boston trip itself causing the objection, or just the idea of traveling 3 weeks in a row?

I’m not wild about the Belgium trip honestly (even though I have enjoyed past work trips to Europe). But since I am on a “farewell tour” of sorts in my current role, that trip is part of my closure process in orienting a team member who may be taking on some parts of my role after I leave.

I am breathing through this decision and validating it by noticing the lightness I feel when I imagine skipping that trip. While I enjoy travel, I have come to appreciate sleep and a certain “life rhythm” in living well throughout my days and weeks. To be my most energetic and authentic self, I must respect that rhythm and notice when my body sends me these signals. When I ignore them, and press on, things tend not to go well.

In all honesty, there is no real reason I need to go to Boston for that conference. I have been to Boston before, and I enjoyed it, but I have no desire to go this time. My boss knows my career path is leading me to a new role. I have been upfront with him about that. He may not understand that my personal deadline of August is regardless of whether I have a job lined up specifically, or if I will simply take a break before my next gig.

I will honor that amazing compass of internal wisdom. It never leads me astray. Time to write the email to let him know my decision on this one…

Cheers & happy weekend, amigos!

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2 thoughts on “Pausing, resting and noticing

  1. MistressoftheInk

    Very thought-provoking and enlightening! I’m moved to pay closer attention to the clues of my body and psyche, too, because I’m one of those people who’s easily swallowed by the go-go-go rhythm of this world. I also feel the need to let the things I experience “settle” better before I move on to the next thing. Otherwise, the deeper meaning of those experiences could be lost on me.. Thank you so much for sharing!

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  2. Lisa | Simple Life Experiment

    Gosh, you must have been exhausted after only six hours of sleep over two days! I have so much respect for the process of listening to our bodies. I find it to be a process of tuning in, almost like a radio station (of the old fashioned variety, that is) – slowly, slowly you find the right frequency and can hear what is going on. Sometimes we get a fuzzy signal at best but other days it’s crystal clear.

    I really relate to what you say about the go-go-go mode we are so often in. My mind has a tendency to be very active. Now that I’ve really found my direction in life, I feel all my ideas, creativity and motivation coming in leaps and bounds. Fortunately, I started a meditation practice at the beginning of the year so am now sticking to it more devoutly than ever. I love feeling so much passion and excitement about what’s going on in my life, but I also need to remember to slow down and stick to my own simple living goal of taking things slowly!

    I hope writing the email to your boss goes well. I imagine it will be great to get that out of your system. It must be so exciting for you to be embarking on an exciting career change. ☺️

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