The last six months have been an emotional roller coaster.
13,000+ miles traveled through 19 states, nearly 50 hikes around the west coast, and three trips to Chicago and back.
A handful of COVID scares and quarantines, the loss of my last grandparent, and time spent with family over the holidays like I haven’t been able to have in a decade.
Bags packed and unpacked dozens of times, the meeting of such fast friends in places where we have traveled, and the mourning of a way of life that I have loved & cherished for eight years in Chicago.
Not all rainbows and highlight reels, but a time of immense growth. I attribute this growth not to the views we’ve seen (although those have been incredible) but to the decision to make each day something new. To purposefully get out of our comfort zones and say yes to the wild ride of living in and traveling from places every month. The roller coaster analogy feels fitting, too, because I chose to lock in the handlebars. I loved just about everything about what daily life entailed in Chicago. And yet, we do only have this one and precious life. The little birdy in the back of my head kept saying, what are you going to do with it?
(Or, alternate quote option: The definition of insanity is repeating the same thing and expecting a different result.) Much to my dismay, simply setting out for a cross-country drive and changing up the daily surroundings didn’t automatically launch me into full-on new and healthy habits. I actually laughed out loud at myself earlier in December when I said “I just don’t have enough time to —” and then I had to stop myself. In Chicago, I was teaching 25+ classes a week, running from class to class, leading workshops on the weekends, planning or hosting a retreat simultaneously, and sometimes working another job or two as a side hustle (or another main gig).
In taking to a nomad lifestyle, that’s what I thought I was choosing to part from, in order to get more grounding in who I am and to be a little softer towards myself.
And yet, there I was, feeling the same sense of helplessness about my schedule, what was on my plate to do, complaining about not having enough time in the day to get done what I intended to get done. I’m not saying I’m not busy now, but life has shifted dramatically. The inputs are not the same.
Except, they kind of are.
The thoughts I was filling my head with, “I don’t have enough time to…” were ingrained in my brain. Self-fulfilling prophecy? Maybe. Something that I wanted to address? Definitely.
Real change won’t happen overnight. I know this. Just like building strength or teaching our bodies’ new movement patterns, changing our THOUGHT patterns requires commitment, dedication, patience, & constant check-ins with ourselves.
But I know one thing is certain as I reflect on the last six months. One more cliché quote for you … it is most certainly not about the destination. The journey is what makes this whole human experience so vibrant, and so full. Not only is it okay to celebrate the little wins daily, it’s something I am starting to treat as IMPERATIVE.
And I’m finding one thing is quickly becoming a key ingredient for me to feel grounded in myself: simplicity.
The moment we got to Oregon, I realized I packed too much. It only took one unpacking event to make up my mind, and straight to FedEx I went. Over the holidays, we combed through our Subaru stash of travel gear and pared down even more. I still go to open my closet or my toiletries bag from time to time and think: what can I get rid of? But I’ve come a long way.
And it feels so, so good. I’ve noticed that I clean more when there’s less to clean. I actually USE what I have, and that feels really good. I don’t procrastinate putting clean laundry away (quite) as long. (Stephen, if you’re reading this, I know I still have room for improvement.) Ultimately, my mind feels clearer when my space feels less cluttered. A simple concept, but one that I am going to keep prioritizing in 2022 and beyond.
I felt disconnected from myself (and of course, community) for the first part of our travels. At first, I didn’t give myself grace in letting that process unfold. When I started to embrace where I was, I felt a shift – a shift with forward momentum urging me towards a new feeling of being settled amidst this unsettled, nomad journey.
I felt a sense of softness heading to our next stop in Austin, and the first night after unpacking our newly lightened carload of belongings, I hit the pillow and rested easy.
And honestly, this is exactly the purpose behind the 21 Days to Reset journey I built over the course of this last month.
I have the integration of new habits formed & ideas gathered from traveling over the last six months to thank for the inspiration for this elevated membership, and I am so excited to share it with you.
It’s an offering that includes purposeful pauses for reflection, movement practices that encourage curiosity, and a sense of community moving through the commitment together.
Most of all, it provides you with some simplicity so you don’t have to think so much. You can simply allow yourself to be, rest easy, and know you are doing enough & you are on track. 21 Days to Reset is as much of a celebration as it is a commitment.
If you feel called to sign up for that, there’s still time for January’s 21 Days to Reset. Registration is here.
Cheers to you all and happy new year, community members, for showing up daily for yourselves. I see it in the messages and emails about the classes you’re taking (from my library or otherwise) and I hope you know how inspired that makes me. I’m learning what it means to show up for me, too, and I feel a ton of comfort in knowing we’re all riding our own version of life’s roller coaster, learning, growing daily, and sharing that with each other in some way, together.