(broad)ject self #7: Self-Care When...You're Feeling Optimistic

Although I was thrilled that the Liberals got a majority, I didn’t really pay much attention to the whole cabinet announcing or swearing-in foofaraw. And yet, there I was at my desk on Wednesday looking at the names and faces of FIFTEEN women, 50% of the cabinet (48% including Trudeau), being sworn in as cabinet ministers. There were women with different cultural backgrounds, different experiences, and different abilities. Was it perfect? Of course not. But I felt this amazing sense of possibility and optimism. As I mused on Facebook, is this what equality feels like?

Things have actually been feeling pretty good lately, which is a feeling I am not prone to trust. It feels like over the last couple of years I have been careening from crisis to crisis, with only brief respites in between. I’ve been living in a hall of shoes, where there’s always an other other shoe to drop. But as much as two steps forward and one step back is frustrating, it’s still a net gain, and I feel like I’ve been steadily getting to a good place where things seem clearer and more possible. There are some major issues still undecided, but I have no control over those, and where I do have control decisions have been made on how to move forward.

When I start feeling optimistic and that instant feeling of suspicion and dread rolls over me, I now have enough straws (see last week’s newsletter) that I can tamp down those icky feelings. If something goes wrong, and it will no doubt at some point because this is life and not a fairy tale, I have the ability to deal with it and the support to go to for help. I have straws and a cushion! So if you’re feeling optimistic and positive and excited there’s only one thing to do, and that’s to do the work.

What work will depend on what you want to achieve. Right now, I’m super focused on wringing every last drop out of my bonus year of Monday-Friday singledom. That means working hard(er), doing more yogawatching more bad TV, and sleeping like a starfish in the middle of the bed because I can. It means taking care of my body and my brain and my heart so that when we’re ready to go for the next stage of life (coughkidscough), my straws are numerous and my buckets are full.

I’ve talked to lots of people, and I’m guilty myself here, who feel optimistic or inspired and then do nothing and…the feeling passes. Life happens. The moment is over and the spark becomes a distant memory. Maybe you’re thinking here, “Sian, I thought it was NO-vember? And now you want me to say yes to something?” What I what you to say no to is putting other people first, completely disregarding your own needs and wants and joy. I want you to say no to apathy and laziness and “maybe tomorrow”. I want you to say yes to making your own life happen, because I know that you are capable of doing amazing and awesome things.

So this week’s homework? Next time you have an idea, follow through. Maybe you take 15 minutes at your desk at work to jot down an outline or a list and follow through at a pre-determined time later. Maybe you drop everything and hibernate in your cave until you have something on paper (or screen or whatever). And keep saying no to the stuff that doesn’t serve you. If you have a spark of genius, you better believe I want to hear about it, so email me at broadjectinc@gmail.com.

Self-caringly yours,