Sometimes, the ideas and phrases that we use to support others is the exact medicine that we need for ourselves.
This week, I have the honor and pleasure of co-facilitating and training a group of individuals in the theory, competencies, and skills of peer support. It is an amazing and diverse group of humans who are learning to use their own experience in mental health and recovery to support other individuals who are living with mental health and substance use conditions. It is a very full and inspiring week, to say the absolute minimum.
I have been training others in these concepts since 2011, and beyond needing to get a few cobwebs out of my brain (it has been awhile since my last training), this week has been fantastic. It is so inspiring to connect with new humans and talk about changing our lives, supporting others in changing their lives, changing systems, and in turn, slowly but surely, changing the world. In addition to the inspiration, I have the chance to spend the week with my co-trainer, who also happens to be a very, very dear friend.
Nonetheless, I am wildly aware that it is time for me to pause. Training weeks, such as these, have a hefty energetic exchange. The conversations are robust and invigorating, and coaching individuals as they wrap their minds around new ideas and tools is stretching. As we are coming close to mid-week, I have found my mind a bit more tired. As my brain works overtime to adjust to this week’s needs, along with keeping up with my usual work, I am officially leaning in to the phrase that I usually use in support of my friends, colleagues, and clients:
Be gentle with yourself.
I had the intention to write a longer blog post this week. I had intended to do many other things, in fact. Instead of pushing my energetic boundary, my priority is to show up with my whole self each day to training. This means waking up earlier than usual (oh hey, 4AM!) to be sure to fit in my self-care (meditation, yoga, breath work) so I am centered before I begin presenting for the day. I am eating whole, real, unprocessed foods as much as possible, along with being kind to myself in my selections. I am giving myself a strict and early bedtime for any evening that I don’t have previously scheduled activities.
I am being gentle with myself. I am prioritizing my needs, and honoring my desires for flexible adjustments. So with that in mind, I will end this blog post with this:
How can you make the conscious decision to be gentler with yourself this week? Of this, you are worthy.
Be gentle with yourself (the side effect may be sparkle).