My go-to way of nurturing myself is to walk. I was rewarded for my climb of steep hills yesterday by finding these great quotes posted by other walkers on a bulletin board in the woods. Too good not to share.
All truly great thoughts are conceived by walking.
~ Friedrich Nietzsche
Above all, do not lose your desire to walk. Every day I walk myself into a state of well-being and walk away from every illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it.
~ Soren Kierkegaard
And here’s a personal favorite, while we’re at it:
Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time.
~ Steven Wright
Walking is the one place I can go where I feel okay in my body. I have been doing everything in my power to lose weight these past months and the scale has not budged a hair after an initial 7-pound drop. So I decided to walk and smile at my 35 extra pounds (50 if I consider a standardized health chart rather than my internal compass of health). There must be some reason you are staying with me. I am doing everything I know how to let go of you (no temporary starvation or fad diets), so all I will do is smile and wave. It will have to be okay. I cannot leave you, my body, and therein lies the “wisdom of no escape.” I can either hate you and my discomfort of being inside you every waking moment or I can walk and sit with you.
The past six weeks, I have been working my way through these books. Walking every mile of the Pacific Crest Trail in my mind, practicing being free where I am, reminding myself over and over the benefits of self-care, grounding of meditation, and “inviting the bell” of the moment. (Medicine Cards found their way to a relative in ill health, but they are a beautiful way to remind ourselves of our connection to the natural world).
And then I was loaned the book pictured below. I cannot recommend this highly enough and will gladly write a review on Amazon. It is the clearest instruction manual on working with boundaries I have ever seen. Being the good English major I am, I will list insights I could not have arrived at without this book.
1) Sensitive people and people who are keenly aware of others can tend to have the most difficulties setting boundaries.
2) Boundaries take care of us.
3) Self-care is the path to teach us where our boundaries lie.
4) Setting boundaries can bring up strong emotions, but boundaries themselves are Yes and No. They are not emotions.
5) If you have an “extreme challenger” in your life, you can learn specific extra super-power tools to maintain your boundaries.
6) Only you can know what is Yes and No for you. Therefore, you are only responsible for setting your boundaries, not the boundaries of others.
7) I recognize the Sacrificer, a bit of the Workaholic (though I work more than I’d like because I need to meet basic needs for two people, not the definition I have always associated with a Workaholic where the go-to escape is working), a bit of the Caregiver.
8) The period I lived through a few years back I like to coin “PTDS” (Post-Traumatic Dating Syndrome) makes perfect sense when I learned how after trauma or dramatic life change, boundaries are at their weakest. It would have helped me tremendously to have had this clarity at that time.
In general, absorbing this fabulous book shows me I have learned a ton about what I need to nurture my being over the past few years and I am living in a balanced way more than ever before. Right hand on left shoulder. Left hand on right shoulder. Pats on back.