Being Breath

stories from the wilderness of everyday life

Look From a Different Perspective

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If the past few days have taught me nothing else, it is just that: before settling into a funk or getting upset or just bored...look at the moment from a different perspective.

Examples?

Starting with the most recent:

Example 1

What I Did:

*20 minutes weights
*25 minutes on the elliptical (effort around 7)
*5 minute core strengthening
*stretching

What I Learned:

As always, it only takes one step. This week has been less than perfect in the workout realm (see more below!) and today was turning out to be no different. I had oodles of excuses. And yet, whether it was from a habit that has become part of my life, a deep yearning that my body is awakening to, or simply guilt...I had to do something.

It was step by step. I just put on my workout gear. If I got that on and still felt crappy, I'd deal with it from there. I went down and picked up the weights. One set. Two. Different muscles. 50 minutes later and I've done a whole workout.

Voila! Don't look at the whole thing - it is easy to get overwhelmed. One step. That's all you have to take. Then the next. Easy peasy.

Example 2:


Remember those excuses I mentioned? One of those was that I have two very rowdy kids this morning. Between snow days and a good nights sleep, both kids are ready to rumble.

I really hate putting them in front of the t.v. (but that's not to say I haven't done that before and won't again). This morning I said no t.v. (commence WHINING!). But downstairs I went...and downstairs they followed.

We have a twin bed downstairs with a mattress that is probably past its prime. (We don't get a lot of overnight guests. This could be one reason.) The kids have turned it into their own jump palace.

Normally, I try to stop it - for the sake of the mattress, for the sake of the wall that they always run into, for the sake of the fingers that always get stepped on, for the sake of my sanity.

Today, I just let them have fun. I figured they were getting exercise (out of breath from continuous jumping!) and having fun. The mattress is shot anyway and a few boo-boos as a result of a good time is something with which I can live.



What if we looked at everything from that angle - are we having fun?

So, go have fun. But be safe. Sorry, mother in me has to say that.

Example 3:

Ok, this is the good one. I debated about how to share this but knew I'd have to one way or another. This is almost like one of those butterfly effect things...amazing how one little thing leads to another.

Remember how I shared my oops the other morning with forgetting my socks for the gym, and how I ran anyway?

That led to very sore feet.

Sore feet led to bandaids and wearing fuzzy socks instead of regular (or no) socks around the house. (Mmmm, fuzzy socks.)

Fuzzy socks led to....wait for it....

me falling down the stairs.



Those stairs.

It wasn't pretty. The kids had already gone to bed and my husband was probably 45 minutes away from getting home from work. Remember that spine issue I have?

I just sat at the bottom of the stairs, box of graham bunnies spilled everywhere, and said out loud, "Hm. Ok. Huh.".


Two perspectives here. Both are the truth.


1) (The thought train I briefly thought about following, but didn't) I've just fallen down the stairs. I'm in pain but know the worst is yet to come because I am in shock. I will pick up all of these bunnies, nurse myself back to health over the next few days, forgo running for several days just in case I've really done something to my back, get some movies so I can spend plenty of time on the couch with my ice packs, and whine about it to everyone I can so they know I'm not just being a wimp.

2) (The thought train I ended up choosing.) I'm at the bottom of the stairs. I'm kind of hurting right now. Oooh look - bunnies! (Really. I picked one up and ate it while I contemplated what to do.) Ok, one step at a time. I'm not hanging out here all night. I will take some Ibuprofen tonight so I can sleep and see how tomorrow goes.

As the pain has subsided but the bruises gotten bigger, I show my husband all my war wounds (bandaids from no-sock-running, bruises) and garner from sympathy from him. (Gotta work this a little bit, eh?) I realize that SO THANKFULLY it doesn't feel like I did anything to my back.

The rest of the pains are just temporary, and if nothing else, a reminder to be more mindful of my steps. I use the boo-boos as ways to pay attention to my body (I'm learning of some butt muscles I didn't even know were there - ouch) and as a new way to train my discipline (can I really work through this even though I have a valid reason not to??).

In every situation, there are many perspectives to be had. It's up to you which one you choose. As my dear friend Connie said, you can work past the cotton balls. Or Melita, in one of her wonderful Monday Moments of Zen, discussed how when you make the choice to do what you love, every day will be a new adventure.

My dear friends, just take a step.

Jump, if you have to.

Enjoy a little bunny graham and for heaven's sake...

be mindful of every step.


And don't forget to have fun.