I’m feeling a little bit irresponsible right now. Instead of writing this, I spent most of the day going to the beach here in New York. Even though I went yesterday, I wanted to go again today because my friends were going and the threat of summer ending is looming and the desperation to get as much sun as possible before that dark day comes is visceral. So I’m sitting here now, slightly scorched, slightly rocking left to right from the motion a 90 minute ferry ride there and back gives you; and trying to pull it altogether.
What is making things better (but maybe actually worse) is I am knocking back my third coffee. Normally I’m pretty regimented about the old caffeine intake: two a day and the last one before 12pm. Without these clear rules I give myself, all hell can break loose in my head with panic about the possible onset of insomnia that I might experience that night. Right now it’s 3.35 in the afternoon and I have to say that this illicit coffee is going down a treat.
Life gets so serious some times. For me, lately it has felt serious all the time. Feeling, emotions are serious; goals, purpose, life plan serious; proper ways to spend the time, routines, meditation, yoga, what to eat, can all become so serious. Being serious isn’t necessarily a bad thing and I think there’s power in learning to really take your self seriously, but like anything balance is important.
I get stressed if I indulge in alcohol, caffeine, chocolate, sun, carbs but sometimes indulging is maybe just what is needed. I am always worried that others think I’m self indulgent, it’s a big fear of mine. I think if I didn’t stop myself I would over indulge in chocolate – I really would. Being indulgent sounds negative but indulging is really such a joyful thing. Indulging: allowing oneself to enjoy the pleasure of something, sounds and is beautiful.
How often do you really allow yourself to enjoy? Really let go of the pressure, of the voice in your head that tells you, you shouldn’t. And if you’re like me, why is it so hard to allow yourself that. Maybe it comes down to a lack of self love or self kindness. And I think it can feel especially hard when you aren’t feeling good. In harder times, it’s so much easier to deny yourself, punish yourself, and become overly frugal and constricted and diminutive and tell yourself you don’t deserve anything. I know I do this and tell myself I will only let myself enjoy life, feel joyful, once all these things fall into place, once all these boxes are ticked.
But that feels sort of messed up. Because it’s in those times when we don’t feel good or happy with where we’re at; that we really need to step in and be even kinder, even more generous with ourselves. It can feel like a fight sometimes to give yourself something nice or treat yourself, but it’s a fight that’s worth having. Because if that voice in your head is loud in its protest against you then you have to fight even louder to overpower any idea or belief lurking around that you aren’t good enough or don’t deserve.
And I know it’s hard, believe me. For the past three years, I have pretty much stopped earning money. I earn some but not really what you would call a liveable wage. And when you don’t have a lot of money coming in or feel happy about your place in the world it is so hard to feel like you deserve any form of indulgence (even things like buying new socks can become emotionally traumatic.) But it doesn’t have to be expensive or extravagant it could be really simple and cheap.
Because we could wait until we’re in a better place and feel great and confident and strong as a bull but what if that somewhat idealistic day never comes or I get hit by a bus tomorrow and all I’ve done is deny myself the opportunity to experience nice things like delicious chocolate gelato or a day at the beach with friends? So don’t look for a reason to indulge yourself, because you don’t need one, just do it. And really give yourself what you want without guilt or fear and if you find yourself feeling those things after, just let them go. Enjoy this, gypsies xx