As we have begun 2020, I have felt quieter… really in alignment with winter, with the season of stillness and release. For the most part, and even with the big push of New Year’s energy, I have been honoring this internal stillness and trusting that this pause I’m taking will allow room for the next wave of output… as it always does for me.
And yet, I have had a few moments of getting caught up in an old familiar voice as I was thinking about how I’m using social media to share my work. The voice said,“You should be posting, Melanie. It’s been over three weeks. You’re gonna lose followers. You won’t be able to catch up.”
Ah! The old familiar voice of fear.
Still, there was an even louder voice saying, “What’s true is I don’t want to post right now. I need the stillness, the quiet, the pause.” I found myself in a space of“I have things to say, I’m just not ready to say them yet, and I know that my sharing will be more meaningful when I catch the wave rather than force it.”
And so, I’ve been giving myself permission to be still.
While there’s definitely something to be said for moving before we feel “ready” or for being consistently in action toward what we say we want even when resistance comes up, it’s also crucial that we learn to discern when we’re pushing or forcing action that isn’t aligned because we feel like we “should.” One way I’ve learned to tell the difference, is by noticing the quality of the pause. How does it feel? Am I avoiding something? Running away or distracting myself from something I don’t want to do? Or am I turning toward something I need? Honoring a stillness that truly wants to emerge in my body and my mind?
If I have the feeling of turning toward stillness rather than running away from or avoiding something, I need to pay attention to that. That’s how I know that I’m being called to honor the essential timing of what’s wanting to be expressed through me. And while I am using this example of social media, you can truly apply this anywhere in your life where you notice yourself overriding your natural needs, desires, and impulses. Anywhere you are pushing or forcing an outcome.
The tension I sometimes feel around this natural desire to pause and the old stories that start to come up about how I really need to keep going brings to light just how much we’re taught to glorify to value the outward expression of what’s being created over the beauty of process. How we often prioritize the importance of the finished product over all that happens beneath the surface as we birth our creations into the world.
No matter where you are in your process, no matter what you’re bringing into existence, I invite you to get curious about that voice in your head that says“you need to be doing more” or “you should be there by now.”
What would open up for you this week if you let go of the “should” and leaned into trusting your own essential timing? Where might trusting your process mean giving yourself permission to take your foot off the gas? What if by allowing yourself to pause, you receive the reinvigoration you’re truly needing to birth your next big creation into the world?
Sometimes we’re just not ready to “go” quite yet. And you know what? That is totally okay. May you give yourself space this week for doing exactly what you need to do.