Permission to take a Pause

March 12, 2021

Last Saturday, after a very productive week, I hit a wall. To say that I was surprised is an understatement.

I had spent the entirety of the previous week in the most action than I’ve been able to muster since leaving my day job at the end of October. I put in several solid days of work generating marketing materials for our March events, did some intensive work on my One Woman Show, and even put in solid performances for both my Shakespeare class and my Self-Tape class!!

I expected to feel energized and use my day to catch up on some basic chores, like ironing and tax preparation, and even put in an hour writing for this newsletter. Then after teaching my Saturday morning Pilates client and making myself breakfast, I noticed feeling that I had no energy left even though I’d only been awake for 2 hours. I decided to give myself a “break” and let myself watch a few episodes of TV, promising myself that I’d rally afterwords. 

My energy was still at an all time low when I finished watching the shows and turned off the TV. Determined to make good on my plan, I thought, well maybe if I do something little, I can build up some momentum … I tried to execute the simplest task of ordering a copy of King Lear and the pen refills I needed. I put them in the virtual cart but I couldn’t even muster the energy to press checkout. That is when I started to feel really stuck!

I found myself faced with the overwhelming question … how can I change this energy?

I thought about all my tools. Should I exercise? Should I go outside? Should I do a meditation? Should I go through a healing process?

With each question, my body was giving me a resounding no. As much I wanted to be able to change the energy, I just needed to give into it.

Admitting this to myself was scary. I am well resourced and I like to fix things and move on. If I do, then I can feel “successful” and show other people how to do what I did. 

It is hard for me to admit that I’m “stuck” or need rest. I worry that if I show my own vulnerability that I will be perceived as incapable as a life coach. Even if I know that isn’t true.

Before I finally gave into my exhaustion and malaise, I had to prove to myself that it was okay to take a break. That taking a break doesn’t make me any less lovable or worthy of success. So I wrote this …

Feeling really sad today and my whole body hurts. I had a plan of what I wanted to do and get accomplished but have…

Posted by Natalie Neckyfarow on Saturday, March 6, 2021

Then I turned off my computer and gave in. I turned on a meditation which often revives me and calms me. Before it was over, I fell asleep. No alarm. No predetermined time when I would wake up and try to be productive again. Just sleep.

When I finally woke up, I decided to try reading – with no attachment to what came from it. As I dove back into The Big Leap, I started considering Gay Hendricks’ question about whether or not my physical state was an Upper Limit Problem behavior. 

As I considered each of the Upper Limit behaviors he lays out, I was struck in particular by what he describes as an Integrity Breach. I realized that in my push to grow my business I’ve been rushing big time!! This is not at all in integrity with the value I’ve been working on since embarking on my Life Coach training of placing self-care over my tendency to overwork. It is of absolute importance to me that I build my business in a way that I avoid triggering burnout. It is also important to me that there is always room for my other creative work as an actor and as a writer, as long I as I want to pursue it.

As soon as I realized the main trigger for Saturday’s energy crash, I recognized that I have to slow down. Even though it feels uncomfortable to not follow through with something I already announced publicly, I am pressing pause on my plans for March Movement Magic. It might not happen in March, but it will still happen when the time is right. For now, I’m content to give myself the opportunity to build a stronger foundation with Private Coaching and Movement & Meditation Circles first.

I still haven’t figured out what the exact right pace is for me to build and grow Cultivating Empathy Coaching and that is okay. Sometimes we have to fully commit to something in order to discover that it isn’t right for us in this moment. When we make the discovery, we have to be open enough to change course. 

Changing your mind doesn’t make you unreliable. It makes you human.

Where in your life are you rushing ahead or out alignment with your values? How can you change course, even in a small way, to bring yourself back into alignment?

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Big Virtual Hugs,

Natalie

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