what’s your motivation?

 

it is super easy for us to judge others based on the things we see them doing (or not)…
 
we often judge based on comparisons of what WE like and what is working or has worked for US…
 
things like:
 
+ how they care for themselves
+ their work ethic
+ their relationship to food or alcohol
+ how and whom they date
+ their sex life and choice of partner(s)
+ how much rest they get
+ how frequently they workout or meditate
+ how they manage or cope with their stress
 
many of these things we are judging could be based on things THEY have said they were having issues with
 
we’re just trying to help
 
i get it
 
i’ve been on the side of wanting to help (fix) others + I’ve been the one doing the thing that others wanted to help (fix) me with
 
BUT
 
here’s what i’ve learned…
 
it’s less about WHAT one is doing and more about WHY they are doing it
 
+ i’ve not taken care of myself out of fear and over-serving for approval AND i’ve chosen to put me after someone else with intention because of a deadline and/or i knew i’d get to me later that day
 
+ i’ve worked HARD out of fear and a desire for approval AND i’ve worked hard for a deadline and from a place of intentional choice
 
+ i’ve eaten food for comfort and to numb out how i was feeling AND i’ve had the same food because i wanted it and it brought me pleasure
 
+ i’ve drank because i wanted to enjoy a glass of wine or bourbon AND i’ve drank because i didn’t want to feel my feelings
 
+ i’ve dated for fear of being alone AND dated because i wanted to spend time exploring new people
 
+ i’ve had sex for approval and a desire to be loved because i was afraid i wasn’t enough AND i’ve had sex because i wanted to experience the pleasure
 
+ i’ve stayed up all night because i was scared of getting in trouble for not finishing what i started and out of fear of being abandoned if i wasn’t “good” AND i’ve chosen to stay up because i was geeked about what i was doing + creating
 
+ i’ve worked out from a place of hating my body AND i’ve worked out because i love my body + want to move and stretch her
 
+ i’ve hidden my stress for fear of not being loved and received + i’ve spoken up for attention AND i have expressed my needs to ask for support + i’ve used my voice to be real and make authentic, vulnerable connections
 
in my world
it’s never about the WHAT we are doing
it’s always about the WHY
 
i invite you to dig deeper
with yourself + others
what you find may surprise you…
 
 
xoxox

ignoring what is doesn’t make it not

 

full speed ahead 24/7/365 causes crashes
 
i know because
i’ve been on the floor
more than once
i’ve lost my sh*t
so many times i stopped counting
i’ve cried hysterically
after screaming at the top of my lungs
when something didn’t go my way
or plans changed
i’ve been so tense my muscles
forgot how to relax
i’ve clawed at my skin
to hold down the rage
 
but you didn’t know
i wouldn’t let you know
on the outside
i was successful
i was achieving
i was helpful & reliable
i looked the part
i was nice
i was friendly
i was pretty & polished
 
on the inside
i was raging
i was short-circuiting
i was melting down
i was burning out
 
>> many successful women are burning out <<
 
it’s a badge of honor to be busy & exhausted
we brag about our lack of sleep and long hours
like they give out awards for suffering
 
we drink a bottle of wine a night
every night
gotta numb out
so we can function
 
we take pills
to stop our tears
to block our emotions
we don’t have time to open that flood gate
if we did
we doubt
it would ever close
we’ve been locked up
so long
silent
for years
 
our hard work is our salvation
really our protection
disguised as our perfection
keeping us from slowing down long enough
to look at the reality of our lives
 
burnout doesn’t happen overnight
it’s a slow burning fuse
 
>> there are warnings << 
 

the problem is, most of us ignore them because they are so accepted and expected that we don’t recognize them for the red flags they are

so
we push harder
motivating ourselves with self-abuse
 
it’s called being an adult
we say
pull it together
put your big girl panties on
just do it
what’s wrong with you
we ask
so-and-so has it worse than you
you’re so lazy
and then we justify
 
it’s not that bad
everyone i know is fried
i’m too busy
i don’t have time
today is the ONLY day to get things done
look at our to-do list
he needs me
they need me
she needs me
it’s fine
i’m fine
i’m fine
bullshit
 
first, you’re not fine
second, fine is not a feeling
 
let’s stop pretending
let’s look at what is REAL
ignoring what is doesn’t make it not
 
if you’re curious about what you might be missing, click here and grab The 31 Most Commonly Missed Signs of Burnout for Women
 
it’s time we reclaim our power 🔥
 
xoxo
 

who are you?

 

my friend…

i wrote this long post on instagram earlier and i’ve spent many moments today questioning.  wondering if maybe the post would’ve been better received had i put it here in the blog. i hear myself silently judging…

maybe it’s too long for the gram.  who is reading all this anyway?  no one cares.  this probably isn’t what they want to see… is it?

jeez.  when i tell myself THAT bullshit, disempowering story there’s only one thing i want to do.

HIDE.

i hear my old inner voice yelling, “retreat!  abort mission!”

the truth is, i am human and as a human, it’s super easy for my old stories to pop up.

i keep reminding myself of this truth while my brain contemplates taking the post down.

but i don’t.

why not?

because i’m experimenting.  i am playing with length, with language, with where and when and how i show up.  and there is no room for judgment in experiments.  just noticing.  then tweaking. then trying again.

plus, my gosh.  who can tell who sees what on social media anymore?!  there is so much out there that if you’re not intentional with deliberately searching for someone and their posts, well– you probably won’t see them.

so here’s what i shared earlier today:

{who am i}
I don’t know ⁣⁣
⁣⁣
You tell me ⁣⁣
I’ll be ⁣⁣
What you need ⁣⁣
Me to be ⁣⁣
To be ⁣⁣
Loved ⁣⁣
⁣⁣
I am ⁣⁣
Who I ⁣⁣
Pretend to be ⁣⁣
Scared to be ⁣⁣
The real me ⁣⁣
Safe ⁣
Under the mask ⁣⁣
I spent my whole life constructing ⁣⁣
⁣⁣
Getting to know ⁣⁣
The woman under ⁣⁣
Cover of protection ⁣⁣
Has been ⁣⁣
Messy⁣⁣
Has felt ⁣
Scary ⁣
I’ve felt ⁣
Angry ⁣
It’s been ⁣
Exquisite ⁣
⁣⁣
You’re in there ⁣⁣
You see ⁣
You’re just ⁣
Buried ⁣⁣
Beneath ⁣
Programmed  ⁣⁣
For protection ⁣⁣
Heart crying⁣⁣
For imperfection ⁣⁣
Soul dying ⁣⁣
For connection ⁣⁣

It is possible to unbecome ⁣⁣
Everything you’re not ⁣⁣
You can let⁣
The layers crumble ⁣
You can take ⁣
The mask off ⁣
You can allow ⁣
Everything you are ⁣⁣
To show ⁣⁣
To shine ⁣⁣
To glow ⁣⁣

Noooo⁣!!!!!!!!!!
They can’t know ⁣
They can’t see ⁣
Me exposed ⁣

⁣Please know⁣⁣
While this may feel scary ⁣⁣
The fear is only temporary ⁣⁣
The pain of pretending ⁣⁣
The weight of the mask ⁣⁣
The effort of the act ⁣⁣
Is slowly killing you ⁣⁣
Crushing your spirit ⁣⁣
Choking off your soul’s song ⁣
⁣⁣
You deserve ⁣
Life unleashed ⁣⁣
Freedom ⁣⁣
Happiness ⁣⁣
Love  ⁣⁣
Real love ⁣
Wild ⁣
Crazy ⁣
Unapologetic ⁣
Authentic ⁣
Deep love ⁣
From the inside out ⁣
⁣⁣
⁣My friend ⁣
You are love ⁣

⁣She is waiting ⁣
For you ⁣
Begging you ⁣
Please ⁣
Come home ⁣⁣

⁣Reunite⁣
With yourself ⁣⁣
By yourself ⁣⁣
Fall⁣
Into yourself ⁣⁣
Surrender ⁣
Trust ⁣
You’ve got you ⁣

for me?

the journey home has been truly magical, beautiful, and an incredible adventure– one i am still traveling.

writing my story has reminded me of so much pain i numbed out and avoided for so many years.

writing my story has also reconnected me to how much i’ve shed and unbecome over the past five years.

my deepest desire is to affirm hope.  wherever you are, whatever you’re going through– when you’re ready, you can heal.

 

you don’t have to pretend.  i promise.  and yet i know.

 

i remember how very alluring and seductive the mask can be and how positively scary the exposure can feel.  i know how terrifying visibility can feel and i know for many of us, our protection is rooted deep and has been for many, many, many years.

 

i don’t expect you to simply read this, rip the mask off, and show up as the real you all the time in every situation.  maybe that’ll be what happens, but if you’re like most of us, it’ll be a process.

 

your unbecoming will be a journey.

 

no matter how long it takes, you’re worth it.

no matter the effort required, you’re worthy.

 

and i’ll tell you what– it’ll probably take a lot less effort and energy and time than you think.

 

if there is anything at all i can do to help support you in the shedding of your layers i hope you’ll reach out.

 

you my sweet friend, you are not alone.

 

 

xo

 

surrender

{surrender}
psst
you don’t need to add
you don’t need to become
anything
anyone
the “work” is surrender
letting go
releasing your death grip
your clingy grasp
on all that is not love and light
but i get how you think you need it
control
i believed i couldn’t survive without it
control
41 years
you couldn’t convince me otherwise
i’m not trying to convince you now
hold on as long as it serves you
and it serves
and hold on long after it doesn’t
if you want
it served me for years
and i held on long after
i couldn’t trust
so i had to control
when you become aware
you will have a choice
to hold
to tighten
or to let go
and if you choose
surrender
you will fall
and that can be scary
or exhilarating
perspective
but my commitment
is to create
is to hold
loving space
for you
as you fall
i will wait
i will welcome your landing
home
 
xo

Life lessons courtesy of my new home…

 


You may or may not know this, but we have recently moved into a new home.
And, a new home = lots of projects.
So, here’s what’s been happening in my world as of late….
Every.  And, I mean EVERY project we have started has taken waaaay longer and required more than we anticipated.
More shopping.
More time.
More effort.
Every time we think, “YES!!!  We’ve got everything we need!” we find ourselves back in the Jeep (often with what we just purchased) and headed back to Home Depot or Lowes.
Here’s what I know for sure:
Every person and every situation can be your teacher.  There are lessons in all things if you’re open to receiving.
What I want to share today are a few of the mic drop truths my new home has been teaching me:

1.  Just jump in and get started.

 

The truth is, if you are doing something that you’ve never done before, there is literally NO WAY you are going to know exactly how long it will take or what will ultimately be required.

Even if you’ve “done research”.

Even if you’ve “asked around”.

Attempting to know the unknowable will keep you frustrated and stuck in inaction, clinging to your BS excuse as to why you have yet to “go for it”.

Even if you attempt a guess at the time and effort required, you’ll probably underestimate.  That’s what we do as humans.

And then you’ll get irritated that it’s taking longer than it is “supposed to”.

Does this cycle sound familiar?

My 2 cents?

Stop planning so much.

Stop trying to know the unknowable.

Jump in and start.

The truth is, you will not know what you actually need or what you really want until you begin.  The specific details and your true desires will not be revealed while you’re sitting on your couch thinking.

They will ONLY gain clarity while you are taking action.

2.  Your “microwave mentality” isn’t serving you.

 

That being said, I get it.

It’s how you’re programmed.

You want results immediately.

And by immediately, I mean yesterday.

You’re a human.  So am I.

There is a part of me that wants my results yesterday too.

But that’s not going to happen.
And, my expectations that it SHOULD will keep me frustrated, aggravated, exasperated and NOT celebrating all of the little wins along the way.
And the truth is, there have been a lot of little wins.
BUT.
If I keep looking at what’s not yet complete, if I focus on what we still have to do, I will continue to feel behind, overwhelmed, so busy, and like “I just can’t get it together” all of which is BULLSHIT.
Do yourself a favor and drop the microwave mentality.
Go on and gift yourself some celebration.
You deserve it.
Look at how much you have done, how much you are accomplishing, how far you’ve come, and give yourself a well deserved high-five!

3.  The joy really is in the journey.

 

This phrase is repeated a lot and to be honest, I used to roll my eyes when I heard it.

But it’s TRUE.

The fun, the joy, the laughter, and all of the memories are made during the process.

Here’s what’s true, all of the memories I have when I think about our home are of the silly things that have happened along the way.

When I think of my laundry room I chuckle at the number of times Amanda had to go back and forth to Home Depot and Lowes.

I do wonder if the neighbors have seen us naked because there was a good week or so that we didn’t have any blinds.

There’s blood on our wall from when our friend helped us re-wire a light in our kitchen and he got electrocuted and there’s part of me that doesn’t want to paint over it.

We’ve ate dinner on the floor and the stairs and we’ve since upgraded to a card table which doubles as my office since my desk is still on the deck about 3/4 of the way sanded.
The truth is, the “old me” used to want all the things to be done perfectly and immediately.  And anything less would create stress and anxiety.
Now I know that perfection is an unattainable lie.
My home?
It is perfectly imperfect and I love it.
I love how it’s unfolding.
I love how it’s revealing itself to me.
I love the process and what I can now say with absolute certainty is, the joy really is in the journey.
You know, life is fun if you allow it to be.
When we change our perspective, when we change how we’re looking at things, the things we are looking at change.
I want to encourage you to stop.
Stop rushing to be done.
Stop rushing to arrive.
Stop chasing the achievement.
Stop hustling to get “there”.
How often are you not fully present because you’re racing to be somewhere else?
You’re missing out.
You’re missing out on memories.
You’re missing out on fun.
You’re missing out on joy and belly laughs.
I can almost guarantee that whatever you’re striving to accomplish will take you longer and potentially be waaay more involved and/or complicated that you anticipated.
But I can also almost guarantee that if you take the pressure off, relax and enjoy the process, you’ll create beautiful memories with friends and loved ones.
There will be more laughter.
More joy.
More learning.
More fun.
xo,
Michelle