Have you had a hard time lately showing up 100% for things?
Whether you’re extremely happy or wildly overwhelmed, if you woke up late or found yourself with a mountain of unexpected obstacles greeting you as you walked out of the house, there are days when your mind just doesn’t synch up with the day intuitively.
Your body is present- your thoughts are in a daze.
Being in a daze can be a habit.
Checking out of life can become the best way to deal with things.
When you get into this habit, at first it feels relaxing. You know… “it’s all good… we’ll see what happens… I just don’t care any more…”
Soon, though, you’ll likely feel anxious, less-powerful and more the effect of things than the cause of them.
Quite literally, you are less powerful when you’re “half-present.”
Luckily, this is an easy habit to break!
I’m no stranger to checking out of life. I spend most of my teenage years and early 20’s in a fog. So many parts of my life were so unbearable that I wanted to sort of fly away until I knew how to manage the feelings. I understand the allure of drugs and extreme states of living as a way to carry yourself far-far-far from the uncomfortable sensations of where you are at the moment.
At 19, I was running around New York in a very fancy and gorgeous crowd. I ate once a day, I would sleep at friend’s house in Manhattan in a glamorous and informal couch surf so I didn’t have to be languishing in New Jersey and I made sure to have just as many sips of cocktails or puffs of marajuana as possible to keep me on the edge of escape. I didn’t ever have much, but just enough to be… hazy. It was “relaxing.”
One day, one puff of pot laced with something I wasn’t expecting, perhaps PCP, landed me passed out on the ground while shooting pool in a leather mini skirt and self-stitched sweater at the most flash-bulby restaurant in all of the city. I actually thought I was dead.
I could feel myself falling down, and then, in a split second I could the whole scene from above. I was stretched out on the floor, then in the arms of a few people I barely knew. All I could think of was: was this me, dead? I watched myself – from outside of myself- being carried past a few artists I loved (how embarassing and bizarre) – in a semi-surreal state of oblivion.
I fully came-to with my head between my legs, covered in ice water, hands full of ice cubes, on the East Village sidewalk.
I felt the ground beneath my feet. I could breathe.
I never wanted to purposely “check out” like that again.
It’s akin to death in an extremely unpleasant way, moving far away from your life to cope with it.
Mind you, I was not a drug addict, I was not out-of-control, I just shared in the very familiar desire many people have to check-out of life, even ever-so-slightly but constantly. The cocktail after work type scenario. It kept me super-stuck in every way even though socially I was on top of the world.
Every single day, I’ve made it a big part of my life purpose to find more and more ways to be present, to eliminate haze and to help other people to be more present.
Even if you’re drinking piles of kale and meditating like crazy, the desire to retreat into a dream state can be a habit. Lots of us have that habit. That’s why the TV, phone and Internet are so popular.
Have you cultivated a habit of “checking out” when you don’t know how to deal with things… even good things?
Flying into fantasyland creates a whole lot of stress and anxiety, blocking up your creativity, shutting down a whole lot of your intrinsic power.
In feng shui, the idea of “vibrant chi” or “qi” – life force that you experience through all of your senses- is key to thriving. When our energy flows smoothly, everything is possible.
Extremes in emotion are not intrinsically bad… they’re part of life. The idea is to harness all that energy and move it into your life rather than having is carry you away from your life.
Breaks are fantastic and make for greater productivity. Escaping for too long from your life is chaos-making and often destructive.
If you find yourself staring at a mountain of stuff to do with no inclination to do it, too spaced out lately to deal with much of anything, here are a few ways to help your mind catch up with your day!
Do a brain dump! Simple. Grab anything you can write with and anything you can write on. Now, GO! Write down every single thing in a big long list that is swirling in your head. The messages you forgot to return, the worry that you didn’t check the mail, how hungry you are, how much you want to be somewhere else, how you wish you could talk to your friend about a problem you can’t approach… EVERYTHING. Dump it on a page.
Take a barefoot walk… even around your office if you can. Basefoot walking really grounds you to the Earth. In this case, the best way is to walk barefoot outside in the grass or on the dirt or sand. realistically, if you are in an office or a city, this isn’t possible. Instead, just take off your shoes and walk around barefoot for a while where you are, if you can. I had a friend who hated wearing shoes. I know it was because he was always searching for a visceral sense of being grounded…and barefoot walking was a start for him!
Light a brightly colored candle nearby. Red, purple, orange, pink: a brightly colored candle can create a point of focus you can contemplate for a few minutes with no stray thoughts swirling. I’m getting magenta ones for my dining room table- where I write- today!
Add some grounding aromatherapy. Being grounded is powerful (*more on this here) and there are many essential oils that can help you feel yourself more poewrfully rooted in the Earth and out of the clouds or fog! A simple trick: try a bit of essential oil (lavender almost always is fantastic) on the soles of your feet. This makes me feel like a magnet is sinking me into the Earth, helping me to tap into the day with more momentum and clarity.
Finish an unfinished, lingering thing on your to-do list. Whether it is a long-overdue phone call or a trip to the grocery store, you have to finish what is lingering. Lingering not-done projects take you away from the present moment and cloud your life.
Production keeps your energy flowing. The more that you create- whether it’s cleaning your home, conquering work deadlines or mastering a workout- the more balance you will feel. In extreme joy, that amplified energy can become great art. In times of chaos, that massive expanse of anxious energy will become fuel for creating “done’s” on your list, and more peace in your life as you go.
Catch up with your day.
Start a new habit of checking-in rather than checking-out.
All amazing things happen when you are fully present and vibrant. I promise. They really do!
P.S.: To immerse yourself in the light of joy so much more, my favorite feng shui and cutting-edge energy-shifting tools that I use almost every day are HERE for you in the Joy Immersion: 30 Day Negativity Detox!
If you want to learn how to transform the place you live into the home you love in full, grab yourself a copy of Feng Shui 101. Its the unique guide I made for you to create your own personalized feng shui at home, in the office, wherever you may be… in 8 weeks! It’s not filled with strict rules or what you “must” do. Its filled with information, questions, exercises and even videos and classes to help you confidently create amazing spaces with killer feng shui and live with more flow! Learn more about the 8-week feng shui adventure & grab your copy to get started right HERE!!! xoxo Dana