This last weekend the stars aligned and I made a small change in the way I'm approaching things in my life. I'd love for this to be a permanent change, but I know myself. I'll enjoy it while it lasts.
Sometimes things drop into our lives in rapid succession to teach us a lesson:
1. First, I read this Rowboats and Marbles post on sex being a choice (thanks to Jaded who linked to it in her post this past Saturday). You guys know I like to flip everything around and apply it to my own vices. It got me really thinking about my needs versus my wants and what I'm letting get in the way of my goals.
2. Second, at our church's Stake Conference (broadcast meeting from some of the leaders of our church), Elder Perkins spoke about removing distractions in our lives: those distractions that are keeping us from meeting our goals of both spiritual and temporal self-reliance.
3.Finally, a friend of mine wrote a post about meditating and clearing her mind of all the things that weren't important in her life and concentrating on herself and her family.
So what did I do? I took some time to sit on the floor and meditate. I cleared my head, focusing on the white light caused by the sun shining through the window onto my closed eyelids. Once my head was clear, I thought about what was important in my life. I thought about the distractions. I said to myself, "I will eliminate the distractions." Immediately, the thought came to me, "No, I will let them go." It was such a simple yet peaceful difference. Elimination sounded harsh and difficult. Letting go sounded calming and uplifting and easy.
Let them go.
What are my distractions? Trivial things that keep me from getting enough rest, from paying attention to my kids, from being physically healthy, from being mentally and spiritually sound, from spending real time with my husband. Facebook, email, Instagram, blogs, picking at my skin, eating sweets, and so on. (I mention sweets because I don't get a sugar high. For me it is a straight low. It impacts my entire day--energy, mood, etc. It induces depression in me, yet I keep eating it.) These might sound like silly distractions, but they really are keeping me from my goals. Some are time suckers, some drain my energy, and some keep me from being fully present in my family's life.
So I'm letting them go.
When I see sweets, the words "Let it go" immediately pop into my head. They aren't a need, no matter what my sugar-addicted brain is saying. "Let it go." And it works. I've found myself choosing to eat sweets periodically, but in small quantities and consciously. I start to pick at my skin and immediately think, "Let it go. It's not necessary." I go to bed at night and my instinct is to check Instagram. "Let it go. It won't matter if you miss a day's worth of pictures. You don't need them. You need sleep."
In the last few days I haven't been down or stressed or thinking about the pornography issues, but I'm hoping that by the time it comes I will be able to say "Let it go. You don't need the stress. The insanity in your head is not helping you in any way. Let it go."