Reviewing how we live our lives – part 2

I have not been blogging for quite a while now. Not for lack of ideas or pages that need working on, but simply because I’ve been too busy – and when not too busy, too overwhelmed and had too much processing to do. And this is not exactly how I want to live my life.

Not that the busyness hasn’t been great – most of the busyness has in fact been with things and people I care about, but I so wish that doing all these lovely and important things wouldn’t leave me so depleted. Sleep and rest has been my first priority; without it I so quickly spin off into states of mind that leave me sad and frustrated. But I wish I had had more time and energy to do some processing in creative ways. I have missed writing and creating things with my hands.

Apart from the alternating waves of busyness and resting I have been going through a phase of contemplating my own existence; my values, my dreams, my desires, my identity, my fears and possibilities. Which is understandable considering all the changes life has brought my way the last couple of years. I think it is also something to do with this time of year; October and November tend to bring up deeper issues for me, enhance my sensitivities and make me more introverted. But even though this phase is not unexpected and not a mystery, it is still a tough time. Being revisited by old insecurities, doubts and hurts.

And as I wrestle with my inner contradictions, my body starts responding as well. My allergies get worse, headaches and migraines visit me more frequently and most debilitating of all: my lower back problems flare up leaving me unable to do much else but go for brief walks and lie in bed. Physical maladies are powerful teachers – and after all the frustration, attempts to find the cause and fix the problem, self-pity, grief and defeat I always arrive at patience and kindness. Trusting that there is a method in the madness of my mental and physical cycles even though the method is beyond me.

Now approaching December a lot of things have fallen into place by themselves; I am not too worried about what is going to become of me and how my future will pan out. A bit of calmness is arriving, I have fewer plans in the coming month and it looks as if my physical state is more stable and maybe even ever so slowly improving. And so it feels like a good time to return to the theme of a previous post: Reviewing how we live our lives or more precisely; how I would like to live my life.

The friend who inspired me to write the first part on this subject has asked me to write about my own aims. I love the idea, but at first I though it would be difficult because the things she had written resonated with me and I could see myself just repeating her words. But with the hope that I can capture what make life meaningful to me and keeps me going I am going to have a go at this now:

My aims for every day

  • Looking after my body; doing things that makes me feel at ease in and with my body. Try not to let my head lead when it comes to my body’s needs but actually ask the body itself what it wants.
  • Listen to my soul;  tuning in on and connecting with those parts of me that feel essential. Could be writing, spending time with the voices I hear, be in nature, be by myself, read John O’Donohue and Saint-Exupery.
  • Practising trust. I spend so much time struggling with my fears, anxieties and worries. The uncertainty and unpredictability of life scares me and a lot of my energy goes into preparing myself for all eventualities. But the desire for control is insatiable, beyond me. Safety is not just creating a safe environment but also about how I relate to situations and surroundings. Vigilance is good and has helped me a lot at times but I think I can begin to practise trust again now the dust seems to be settling after all the changes in my life.
  • Enjoying my partner. I would like to go to bed every night knowing I have spent time – whether it be moments or hours – enjoying his uniqueness and appreciating his presence in my life.

My lifelong aims

  • Looking after the relationships that makes life feel meaningful to me. Give them the time, space, nurture and energy they require.
  • Learning to accept the cycles and rhythms of me and my life.
  • Finding the balance between flexibility and stability, abstraction and pragmatism, complexity and simplicity, engaging and withdrawing
  • Express myself with authenticity – whether artistically or emotionally.
  • Continue to explore my own potential in different directions


I partly wish the list above was more concrete. Like I could pin down how exactly I would do these things, a more practical “to do” list where I could tick off the jobs as I got them done. But that’s not really how it works. Not in my life anyway…

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