Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Moving Forward, Part II

Didn't I write a post with this same title a few months ago?  I did, and more of you read that post as well as its companion pieces, The Waiting Game and Walking Through Fire than any other posts on this blog.  Thank you!  From those numbers, I'm going to assume that means you are interested in me and how I navigate my creative life.  We learned last week that numbers can be very misleading, so if I'm wrong, please let me know, either through comments right here on the blog or on your favorite social media outlet.

Here in the US, we're moving forward. For some that movement is joyous, filled with hope for the future.  For others (like me), that movement is with heaviness and deep concern.  I'm honestly struggling with moving forward.  Here's how I'm coping:

Healthy Living - I'm starting every day with exercise. I'm trying to eat as well as possible. I'm trying to limit my vices - tortilla chips (particularly the Acme made-in-store variety), wine and chocolate (I'm such a cliche).

Meditation - I'm meditating daily. Yesterday, I chose a guided meditation on loving-kindness. The guide asked me to think of someone with whom I have difficulties. I was brave and made the difficult choice. It wasn't the best meditation session I've ever had, but I did feel better, not only when I finished, but as I went through my day.

Carl Lutz Memorial in Budapest.
Carl Lutz, a Swiss diplomat, is credited with saving the lives of 62,000 Jews during WWII.

Mindful - every time I pick up a device or turn on the television, I ask myself why.  What is the intention?  What am I seeking? Am I going to find it there?

Go Outside - When I feel the urge to randomly check, I put the device down and I walk outside.  I look up in the sky and I breathe.  This morning I saw a bright red big ol' cardinal hanging around in our backyard! I felt like he had landed in that tree just for me. Two weeks ago, I saw a darling juvenile woodpecker!  I did! Her black and white feathers sparkled in the sunshine.  Much better than reading yet another post full of information or opinions that I have already heard.

Bye Bye Love - I’m not off of social media completely, but I am on a diet.   After participating in some intense and interesting discussions, I have said just about all I feel is necessary to say right now. I reserve the right to change my mind.

The Jewish Cemetery in the former Jewish Ghetto in Prague, Czech Republic.
Seems odd to me that people used to be forced to live in ghettos.  Or does it? Does it to you?

What You Want, Baby I Got It
- Respect. I am using that word more these days, as in "I respectfully disagree with you." I should have been using it earlier. I regret that now.

Choose Wisely - I’m that annoying Facebook friend that debunks your crazy posts.  Blame it on my excellent public school education back in Wisconsin, where I was taught to check my sources.  These days, my favorite sources for news are The Washington Post and Nextdraft. I have always relied on Snopes for debunking.

Good Morning, Budapest!

Take Action - We all know what a fan I am of action.  I experienced the benefits this morning.  I woke up feeling depressed which led to a foreboding sense of anxiety.  Not good.  After my walk and meditation, I pulled out my accordion and practiced.  Then I worked on a song.  I hit that sweet spot of flow and time flew by.  In addition, I felt SO MUCH BETTER, a feeling that has stayed with me through the entire day.

Then there's action to make changes in the world.  I know I'm still too emotional to make the best decisions, but I have made a commitment to study one issue for the rest of 2016.  When the new year arrives, I will decide if I want to devote more time to this issue.  I have decided to study gerrymandering.  My current goal is to spend 30 minutes every week researching this issue.   Public accountability is a daunting proposition for me! Will you readers hold me to that?  Will you ask me for updates? 

Rock Steady - These thoughts come from the marvelous Meg Townsend of Aluna Adventures:

Steadiness doesn't always get the pomp and circumstance it deserves. It doesn't always feel exciting or new to people. But when we create steadiness and stability in our lives, it actually creates MORE SPACE for energy to flow. We find ourselves more inspired, flowing with creative energy, more passionate, and with great vital reserve.

May you all find the way to move forward as well.

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