February 13, 2016—Day 43 (WD 324)

Sunrise Pages February

Happy Morning, Universe!

Thank you, Creator, for continuing to inspire me and help me be brave. Sometimes Often I tell myself it takes so much effort to dare greatly; when the truth is, it’s mostly my resistance that creates the need for effort; that makes it feel like work.

Work is another one of those tricky concepts. There’s a saying that I’ve remembered since I first heard it – “When you’re doing something you love, you’ll never work another day in your life.”

I feel the simple truth in that statement; but, I’ve always struggled with it, because of the way I think about tasks and work. The counter-argument I also learned from an early age was, “Nobody loves their job; there are things about every job that you’re not going to like – that’s why it’s called ‘work.’”

So, the latter was the framework of my belief system; whereas, the former has been, I guess, a hopeful ideal. When I label something as “work,” I subconsciously think of it as undesirable and no fun, and I resist it. Even when it is in service to my Joy, Peace, and Purpose.

For years, this all happened under the radar. I had no idea I was subconsciously resisting and sabotaging my happiness. I guess now I’m at least aware of it. Ha!

Let me give you some examples. Often, when I go to start these writings, I have to first overcome resistant thoughts about being too tired, not having enough time to write, and not knowing what to write. Those same thoughts, often; even though I have been guided by the Creator for the last forty-three days, and I’ve so often been energized and satisfied by the results.

Over the summer, I ran many days after the move, and put up a lot of miles; at least, for me. But, that was when I went running, in part, when I felt stuck doing other work. Now, when I think about going for a run, there’s a sense of “should” – I “should” go for a run – which makes it feel like work to me; and again, I resist it, telling myself I’m too tired, don’t have enough time, and have other things I “should” do…Even though running almost always gives me satisfaction, even if just in the “doing” of it.

Or meditation. Meditation challenges have helped me experience a sense of peace in my life. But, as far as establishing a routine practice, I have resisted it. Again, I think it’s because I begin to think of the practice as “should,” and I classify it as work; then, I opt to do mindless, un-“should” things like watch television or check Facebook, telling myself I don’t have time to meditate for twenty minutes.

Does any of this sound familiar? Probably not the exact activities, but maybe the thinking and resistance?

Luckily, I’ve been learning about what’s going on, so I can manage it head-on. One school of coaching calls these identities we take on our saboteurs. In my training, I learned about “The General” and “The Wild Child.”

The General likes structure, makes rules, builds lists, and sees a bridge connecting where we are to where we want to be. He is very disciplined; it’s all about executing “The Plan.” He’s in charge of “work” and “should.”

The Wild Child is about being in the moment, free and playful, following impulse and intuition. She finds structure can dampen and restrict her creative energies; a real sense of kill-joy. She wants to run through the wet grass barefoot, just because it feels wonderful.

So, you can probably see where these two identities would struggle with each other. And, in terms of self-sabotaging, we sometimes cleverly leverage each against the other to rationalize staying small and scared.

When The General says I should meditate today to build a strong practice, I invoke my Wild Child to resist having to do anything – no “should.”

The General wants to structure all the Joyful Things into Standards and Best Practices – “shoulds;” which The Wild Child resists. From this impasse, I develop no deep practices or formula by which I cultivate change in my life. This pitting of both against the other protects me from change, exploration, and risk.

But, that’s not what I want; it’s not what I choose.

So, how do I get both identities to do what they do; yet, still work with each other rather than against? That’s a question I’m still learning to answer.

Right now, it’s mostly about using the Wild Child to identify joyful activities, then getting The General to create a structure. The Wild Child still resists the daily practices, but right now I push through that, to the reward.

But, I believe as I learn, the two can work together even more effectively for me, helping me keep focused on joyful practice in a free and inspired way.

Still listening, creating, and evolving, Creator. Thank you!

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