What if I decide to NOT work on that right now? The moment I thought the thought, I was flooded with a sense of relief. I’d decided to be ok with letting things be what they are for now, and it felt good.
As the social media cliché goes, I don’t know who needs to hear this, but I want to remind you that it is ok to choose not to change yourself.
You can notice something about yourself that might not be serving you well and still decide now is not the time to take on changing it. You can decide that the problematic habits of thought or behavior are serving you in other ways that you value more right now. You can decide that you don’t have the energy. You can decide that it simply isn’t as much a priority as something else you’d rather focus upon. You can decide to accept your imperfections to focus your limited time and energy on things that give you joy.
Sometimes the right thing to do is to simply notice the patterns and practice observing them without judgement or shame. When do we choose to make these less-than-optimal decisions? What are we feeling, what happened right before, what are we noticing about how those decisions make us feel in the moment or directly afterwards? Noticing can still be progress, even if the only change is in our awareness.
Sometimes the best thing for ourselves is to accept where we are at and to give ourselves the patience and self-compassion we would give to a child or a best friend. A helpful turn of phrase I learned years ago to reduce the feelings of shame or obligation with certain tasks was to reword my thinking from “I should” to “it would be good if” or “it might be nice if.” It might be nice to talk a walk. It would be good if I included some protein at breakfast. It might be nice to hit that man’s big-ass pick-up truck with a baseball bat after he tried to run me off the road during my weekend run. Well, you get the idea. Replacing “should” with “it would be nice” turns it into a positive option rather than something you have to do.
Choosing to not act doesn’t have to mean closing the door forever. It’s just not walking through the door right now. Feelings of urgency rarely lead us to making our most sustainable and joyous decisions. Give yourself time to breathe, to notice, and the freedom to accept where you’re at for right now.
What is something you have decided to NOT work on lately? I’d love to hear about it! Or you can find and follow Progressive Strength on Facebook (where I often choose not to improve my social media presence, but you can choose to say hi, if you want to).