Yesterday I was tired. Last week I was REALLY tired. I didn’t know why, as I usually have plenty of energy and get a good night’s rest. As I reflected on the past week I realized what was happening – I was draining my own energy by spending too much time in my head.
I think many of us live our lives thinking too much. For me, my head was swimming with feeling not enough — I felt I was behind in my online class, my day job wasn’t challenging me, I should be going to yoga more, I should go the gym for a tougher workout than walking at the park. I was beating myself up mentally for not living up to what I THOUGHT I should be doing. I preach about being present, and here I was living anywhere but. Now I am worrying about that!
In my Shoden Level 1 training, the International House of Reiki teaches that we are all beings of brilliant light. However when we do things like worry and not live in the present, we start putting the equivalent of lamp shades over our light, and we become dim. In that state we are not living as our true self, nor are we available to shine our light on others. I had essentially spent the week dimming my light, and it manifested in me as being tired all the time. Something had to change, and I decided to get back to basics.
First, I needed to ask for help. I have no problem reaching out to others in my time of need, as I find I always feel better when I do. I needed to talk to someone I felt would understand and could relate to what I was going through, so I reached out to my Shoden Level 1 instructor, Maria Kammerer.
We had a wonderful discussion, and she reminded me that going through Level 1 is the equivalent of being a jar of settled mud in water that has been shaken up. Stuff is swirling all around and it takes time for it to either leave our bodies as we no longer need it, or for the stuff we need to settle and take hold. It was so comforting to have someone literally say everything is all right. I am doing fine. In fact I am doing really well and this is all normal. Sometimes we just need that trusted someone to tell us things like that to help rid ourselves of self-doubt.
Second, I needed to get those damn shades off and start shining brighter. How? The Reiki precepts. They can be interpreted in may different ways, but the International House of Reiki lists them as:
Just for Today:
Do not anger
Do not worry
Be true to your way and your being
Be compassionate to yourself and others
Elegant, simple and yet so powerful. The first line leads you back to the present. It doesn’t say “never do these things”, it says “just for today”, so already I am pulled into the here and now. Of course my mind immediately went to “do not worry” and “be compassionate to yourself and others”. My busy mind was worrying at a furious pace, and I was beating myself up for not only the things I was worrying about, but the fact that I was worrying at all! Quite a vicious circle.
I took a deep breath, and read through them all. Any anger dissipated as I was reminded to be grateful and also be true to my way and my being. Just this morning as I woke up and my inner voice starting right back to beating me up, I said stop. What if instead of worrying about what was “wrong”, I celebrated what was right? My online course? I have done most of the homework, and besides, there is no time frame for it – I have as much time as I need to complete it. My day job provides me a ton of freedom and I get to work from home. Yoga? I happened to read a Curvy Yoga blog about how she struggled with her practice, and decided to turn it around. She presented an invocation, “May my practice support me how I need to be supported.” I adopted it – when I decide to go to a class it means I need it, not that I have to do it. And lastly, the gym vs. park. I religiously go to the gym three times a week to do cardio and lift weights. If I chose on day 4 or 5 to feed my soul at the same time I feed my physical body it is OK. It is more than OK. It is perfect.
Spending too much time in our heads creates imbalance in our wellbeing and dims our light. If you find yourself in the same situation, I recommend reaching out for help and writing down the Reiki precepts and keeping them handy. And of course there is always the option of getting a Reiki treatment to help you out! (book one with me here).
How could you feel and what could you offer when your energy is free and flowing and bright? Don’t “think” about it, just allow it to happen and notice. Get out of your head and into your being.