My 32nd year has been a year of finding rituals. Rituals for myself, something I can incorporate into my daily life to elongate my days, my breaths, my feeling of time by putting some meaningful and wholesome purpose in them. I’ve done a lot of introspection. I want to feel content from the “withinside” as I like to say. I’ve been wanting to incorporate something more than just the daily minimum of life into my days for a while now. And I found a couple ways to do this!
This year I decided I wanted to concentrate on listening to the pain in my body. It all started with eating a popcorn kernel. The kernel made its way into the back of my wisdom tooth area and lodged itself. I decided to go to the dentist due to the pain and get it checked out. The walk back from the dentist led through the street with a physio clinic. I realized my shoulders were always hurting for the last several months, so I booked an appointment (finally!) to get this looked at. That led me to a month and more of going to physio, getting needle therapy done on my shoulders, looking at posture correction and working to gain some strength in my body. A month of listening to signs and signals my body was giving me: anxiety while I drive, high workload causing stress. And from that, came two amazing things: two little rituals.
One, I was given an exercise program to do, from every day to every few days. I kept it up. It felt good and it became a routine. It gave me something to look forward to and made my body feel better, more stretched, more relaxed.
Second, I decided to look into other ways that would “feel my soul.” That became reading in the sunlight. Every weekend I now sit in the sunlight and read a book I love and one that inspires me. And forces me to look into myself. It’s weekly chicken soup for my soul.
A side effect of all this was me learning some good breathing exercises. Deep breaths. Ujjayi breaths. Box breaths. Whatever name they’re called or form they come in, taking the deepest breath you can, and slowly releasing it, feels like you’re living life in the moment. Even though you breathe all day long, unknowingly, the minute you take those deep few breaths, hold them, and release… There’s just nothing like it.
I’m trying to find other daily rituals. Whether it’s climbing the stairs of our condo building (this pandemic means or gym is closed), writing a weekly blog post (ok, maybe even monthly), or finding a new way to maintain my health, my sanity, and keep the stress at bay and out of my life, I’m a big believer in rituals. They bring focus to your life and lead you from the mundane dailies into the wholesomeness you can achieve.