Look. I’m a Virgo. We think. A LOT. And imagine my dismay when I discovered YOU ARE WHAT YOU THINK. That’s discouraging. Lol
Our thoughts create our reality. Which makes me think (see what I mean?) of how we start the day. How do you greet each morning? When the alarm goes off – do you squint in pain and scream out, “Noooooooo!’ And then hit snooze three times…or more? Be honest!
Do you head to the bathroom with sleep-crusted eyes, hair disheveled – see yourself in the mirror and think, “Ugh.” Followed by a long sigh and thoughts about how you need to lose weight? Or eat better? Or need a haircut?
When you really examine your morning routine, are you setting up your day – and your mind – for success or sabotage?
Wanna try an experiment with me? What if, instead, when your alarm goes off, you literally say out loud, “Phew, I made it. I get to live another day!!” I mean, seriously. Let’s do this! (Don’t worry, I’m trying to push myself here, too.)
What if next – you walked into your bathroom, saw yourself in the mirror, and said, “We’re gonna be OK. You’re awesome! Today is a new day.” How different would that feel?
I guess I’ve been thinking a lot about life and death, lately. (I told you, we Virgos never quit.) And how I’m living my life. I’m coming off celebrating another birthday (always an introspective time), and I’m seeing people close to me deal with losing a loved one, or fighting for their own life, to some degree.
These are heavy thoughts to have, as I sit in my bedroom – quarantined – steering clear of the painters who are scurrying about my apartment today. They’re here to fix the cracks in my ceilings and walls.
Which has got me thinking: when’s the last time we fixed our own cracks?
We all have pain pockets or cracks. Some old and deep. Some ripe with sharp edges. But again, you are what you think. You are what you put your attention on. Are you going to keep staring at those broken cracks or do something about them?
I’m not sure we’re supposed to cover up the cracks as if they didn’t happen. But we do need to repair them. What if instead, we saw the cracks as simply part of our journey.
There’s a centuries-old Japanese art called Kintsugi. The Japanese take a piece of pottery that has been broken and put it back together with gold – embracing the flaws and imperfections – instead of erasing them.
This is a beautiful metaphor for healing yourself. Those cracks make you who you are, and if you fill them with gold – instead of plain old glue – more beauty emerges.
My painters even got into it 😉.
(My painters practicing the art of Kintsugi.)
Instead of burying the pain, do a little remodel. And I really believe this starts with the first moments of the day.
One thing I started doing is getting up about a half-hour early (gasp!), grabbing a cup of coffee, and going for a walk. My boyfriend is tagging along, too. (And trust me, he HATES getting up early.)
First off, the early morning hours are so pleasant and quiet. I also live in Los Angeles, so I get how fortunate I am with the weather. (I owe it to the world to get outside.) But also, coffee and long walks are such a comfort to me. Why not do both? It’s odd how often we don’t do the things that actually make us feel better?!!
Walking is not just for a little exercise, it’s for the mental stimulation of moving the body and getting outdoors. Plus, we bump into neighbors along the way. There’s something so sweet about a smile and a genuine “Good morning!” exchange with someone.
Don’t even get me started with Fall. It is BY FAR my favorite time of year. People say you can’t feel seasons here on the West coast, but I truly do feel Fall. (I mean, when it’s not 90 degrees out.) I live for those crisp mornings when you need a sweater and warm socks.
I’m not saying waking up each morning and being all sunshine and apple pie is easy. It takes practice. You might even have to fake it ‘till ya make it sometimes. But it all makes a difference. The way you see yourself. The way you talk to yourself. And the way you let those cracks in your life dictate what’s next.
I’ve spent a lot of time going over things that have happened in the past and I am 100% over the constant review. I can’t change the past. I can’t predict the future. All I can do is let those cracks shed some light on who I’ve become. Let them shine some light on where I’m going.
On a good day, I might even thank those cracks for coming along for the ride.
Julie Slater, aka THE LOTUS FLOWER, looooves music. Besides being a rabid fan and musician, you may recognize her voice. She’s a voiceover artist and audiobook narrator (www.julieslater.com). She’s DJ’d on top stations: 88.5 FM and 100.3 the Sound in LA and 92.3 K-Rock in NYC following Howard Stern.
When she’s not at concerts, you can usually find her meditating or in the kitchen. She has a slight obsession with deep, dark cabernets & small batch whiskey. Namaste!