Practice Feeling Safe

One of the things I learned in 2018 was to bring my attention to the feeling of safety. This idea had been floating around my consciousness but came into focus when I read an interview with John Makransky in Tricyle about Buddhism and anger, Aren’t We Right to Be Angry?

“In many Buddhist traditions practitioners learn to experience themselves as the object of the unconditional love and compassion of the buddhas.”

Photo credit:  Milan Popovic

Photo credit: Milan Popovic

When I know I’m safe, my hands feel warm. This is important for me because my hands are usually cold due to poor circulation. I believe my poor circulation is caused partially by having grown up in a fearful environment - chronic stress limits circulation as part of a flight reaction.

So, every time I realize I’m safe, I pause and really feel it. I say to myself, “I am safe right now. Nothing can eat me. My life is not in danger.” I feel my Body relax, I feel the cortisol and adrenaline lessen, and I smile when my hands warm up.

This feeling of being held by the present moment, completely safe and alive, has gradually replaced my usual default state of feeling anxious. Now, when I think of scary things like losing my job or having to move, I remind myself that I wouldn’t literally die right when those things happened, and that helps out a lot.

From this grounded feeling of safety, it’s easier stop thinking about the scary things that probably won’t happen. But when I do think about them, I tend to see the opportunities that lie inside, and that actually makes me feel excited and in the flow of life.

My favorite ways to feel calm and safe are:

  • regular meditation

  • trauma release exercises

  • belly dancing

  • stretching to lift up my solar plexus

  • squatting almost to the ground to focus on my pelvic floor

  • deep breathing from the belly up and out sideways to the lungs

  • knitting

I hope you find ways that bring you back to the present, too.

October Grounding

I write a Monthly Passage, which I learned from Havi’s blog at The Fluent Self, to let go of last month and enter the new month with intention.

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What worked in September

  • dancing in the morning

  • rest

  • accepting my creative block (not fighting it)

  • playing Stardew Valley more than normal

  • doing fun things

  • leaving to-dos for later

  • Tarot!

  • being brave

  • letting go of outcomes

Next time I might

  • continue with sprints (working on a project just for one week at a time)

  • drink more fluids on the weekend

  • the day ends at 9 pm, that's it, period.

Qualities for October

Grounding. Receptive. Connection. Relax. Shielding. Spaciousness. Roots.

Things I'm working on

  • receiving guidance

  • softening

  • developing my Cosmic Heart

Looking forward to

  • art fairs

  • autumn colors

Asking and hoping for

  • fun

I'm ready for

  • letting go of who I think I am

  • guidance

  • reclaiming

Month of Joy

I write a Monthly Passage, which I learned from Havi’s blog at The Fluent Self, to let go of last month and enter the new month with intention.

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What worked in August

  • BUBBLE MAPS still saving my life
  • waking up at 5.30 in the morning to make time to dance before work
  • rest
  • nourishing myself
  • burdock and hawthorn infusions
  • doing fun things
  • leaving to-dos for later
  • doing sprints (working on a project just for one week at a time)
  • accepting reality and meeting myself where I am
  • preventing headaches with menthol salve
  • being open to receive help and clarity

Next time I might

  • continue with sprints
  • drink more fluids on the weekend
  • the day ends at 9 pm, that's it, period.

Qualities for September

Joy. Let Go. Light. Nourish. Adventure. Fun.

Things I'm working on

  • leveling up my tech skills
  • my biz
  • job search

Looking forward to

  • creating
  • feeling more me
  • feeling like my spirit is rested
  • more flowers on my plants!

Asking and hoping for

  • fun

I'm ready for

  • shedding
  • happiness
  • soak up the good stuff

August Light-Bringer

I write a Monthly Passage, which I learned from Havi’s blog at The Fluent Self, to let go of last month and enter the new month with intention.

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What worked in July

  • BUBBLE MAPS oh my god, bubble maps saved my life
  • waking up at 5.30 in the morning to make time to dance before work
  • rest
  • nourishing myself
  • burdock and hawthorn infusions
  • comforting my Body when I'm upset
  • doing fun things
  • Tarot
  • redirecting my thoughts
  • thinking of depression as an injury that I need to heal from, rehabilitate myself

Next time I might

  • do a Tarot reading right when I start to spiral into Circular Thoughts Town
  • replace uncertain outcomes with my own outcomes
  • do sprints - a week focusing on one project, then a week focusing on another
  • continue with bubble maps

Qualities for August

Clarity. Light. Rebellion. Obstacles Removed. Illusions Dispelled.

Things I'm working on

  • my biz
  • job search
  • tidying

Looking forward to

  • art fairs
  • flowers on my plants

Asking and hoping for

  • hope itself

I'm ready for

  • casting off
  • clarity
  • certainty

July Flow

I write a Monthly Passage, which I learned from Havi’s blog at The Fluent Self, to let go of last month and enter the new month with intention.

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What worked in June

  • I never thought I'd do this - wake up at 5.30 in the morning to make time to dance before work
  • having one goal to focus on
  • wearing my garnet bracelet to remind me to focus
  • menthol salve for headaches
  • fun stuff: watching Miss Fisher and Sailor Moon
  • switching to a shampoo bar
  • saying no
  • burdock infusion
  • chores on weekdays
  • Monday Tarot, of course
  • going for jobs
  • being courageous!
  • re-ordering my compass with Nourish at North

Next time I might

  • plan for tomorrow at 9 pm
  • when I hesitate to do something, ask why
  • keep to my loose schedule

Qualities for July

Flow. Reflection. Reduction. Relax. Recover.

Things i'm working on

  • finalizing my portfolio website
  • getting a new job

Looking forward to

  • new job
  • getting stuff done
  • my plants growing

Asking and hoping for

  • support
  • continuing towards my desires

I'm ready for

  • lasting good habits - flowductivity ^_^

Focus on June

I write a Monthly Passage, which I learned from Havi’s blog at The Fluent Self, to let go of last month and enter the new month with intention.

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What worked in May

  • setting aside time to plan tomorrow
  • creative stuff Monday through Wednesday and job stuff Thursday through Sunday
  • Monthly Tarot
  • sitting with my fears and honoring them
  • dancing regularly again
  • watching new dancing videos
  • choosing nourishment
  • letting go of what I didn't want
  • making an effort to have fun
  • using Clip Studio Paint!
  • menthol salve to keep headaches away

Next time I might

  • do ablutions at 9
  • job stuff for one hour, then do something fun
  • keep to my loose schedule

Qualities for june

Focus. Let Go. All that doesn't serve me falls away. Freedom! Yes to my yes.

Things i'm working on

  • making this portfolio website!
  • getting into bed at 9.45 to have a good night's sleep for getting up at 5.30
  • [somewhat secret project]
  • moving on!

Looking forward to

  • choosing someone to help me
  • my plant babies sprouting! A few have come up already <3

Asking and hoping for

  • a new way to spend my time during the day!
  • continuing towards my desires

I'm ready for

  • moving on to something amazeballs

2018 is the year of Hope

I tried something new for this year – the Year Ahead Spread from The Wild Unknown. And it was awesome!! I was leery of seeing the whole year at once, but it’s given me such peace of mind and excitement.

 

I chose just one word from these cards as themes for the months – that in itself was hard, but I went with my intuition. So, here are the themes for my whole year:

  • January
    Strength
    Majesty (this is Havi’s word for January too, but I felt it fit)

  • February
    IV of Cups
    Presence

  • March
    V of Wands
    Courage

  • April
    The Hermit
    Reflection

  • May
    Knight of Wands
    Bold

  • June
    VIII of Pentacles
    Focus

  • July
    The Moon
    Flow

  • August
    The Devil
    Clarity

  • September
    The Fool
    Joy

  • October
    Ace of Pentacles
    Grounding

  • November
    II of Swords
    Trust

  • December
    III of Swords
    Core

First published January 6, 2018 on Ridley the Fool