Years ago, I don’t even remember how many, Lowi and I bought transformation rings. It sounds way more complicated and organized than it actually was. We’ve discussed our transformation rings before. Lowi’s even had hers transformed by a dog and returned to its rightful shape again. Talk about transformation.
I have been working on transformation of sorts. Acceptance, appreciation for what is, ironically, is the path toward transformation. Go figure.
On Easter Sunday I was looking for a necklace to wear. That’s odd in and of itself as I typically am not much of a jewelry wearer. I opened a glass container looking for a particular necklace and instead found my own transformation ring. I immediately smiled and got the message. As Gabrielle Bernstein says all the time (all the time mostly because I re-listen to her Soul Series presentation on the regular) that we are being guided. but we are not LISTENING. Yep. I get that.
So I put the ring on and headed to church. And I was listening. I really put effort into listening these days. Listening to what I am telling myself, what I am saying to others about them, about me. Because these thoughts, these comments are shaping our lives, all the time.
I have made so much progress in the last year or so. I mean, gargantuan progress but I am often resistant to appreciate it, to name it because I am not yet where I think I need to be. Where I so desperately WANT to be. I put the ring on and as I told Lowi in a text:
“I wore it to church and decided it was going to be my reminder of where I’m going AND how far I’ve come.”
We bought these rings at a time we thought we needed transformation. Little did I know that a few years and some serious ups and downs we would be forced into positions where we either change and transform or stay stuck. Well nobody likes to be stuck so… transformation it is.
What we forget, however, is that transformation is work. We don’t like being stuck but it does come with perks. It comes with acting out of habit, doing what we’ve always done, and never being all that uncomfortable other than the discomfort of being stuck. For example, I have been making a real effort to eat a good breakfast and most mornings it’s a smoothie so I can pack a lot of goodness into one meal. But there are many mornings that my reaction to making a smoothie is, “I don’t feel like it.”
What I am really saying, I have discovered is that I don’t want to work at it, I want to move from habit because it takes less thought and effort, I want to do what I have done before because it’s comfortable even if it isn’t giving me what I want. Then you realize that you are experiencing internal conflict: What I SAY I want and what I FEEL I want.
The feeling eventually wins that’s why willpower only gets us so far. So how do I change things so what I feel and what I think match? Transformation 🙂
For me, it’s first acknowledging that I am in conflict even if it’s the simplest conflict of I want a smoothie, I don’t want to make a smoothie.
And then accepting that I am at odds with myself instead of denying it or pretending it’s not true.
It’s a real party in my head some mornings. You never know who is going to show up in there.
How do I get to feeling like I want to make a smoothie? I lean into it. I think about how good I feel about myself for having made it. How good it tastes drinking it. And also that I often ponder after making it: Why did I resist that?
Often I resist it because of habit. I have an idea that doing something else is easier and what I want is easy. We all want easy. The problem is “easy” is often a code word for stuck. Change can be easy but we gotta get our head and our heart on the same track. When they are like one of those painful story problems from the fourth grade that start out: Two trains leave the station at …” If your heart train and your head train are on different tracks, heading different directions the question isn’t how do I force it? The question is how do I get the trains on the same track, heading the same direction?
Lately when I feel conflicted. When my feelings don’t match up with my thinking I look at my transformation ring and I think I have come so far, don’t quit on yourself now. I know how it feels to have my trains moving against each other. How would it feel for them to be chugging toward the same purpose?
So I work on getting my trains on the same track through acknowledging, accepting and leaning into the feelings and working through it until everyone is putting their effort in the same direction.
Sunshine & Sarcasm,
Lowi & G