Offered the choice between ease and struggle, most of us would be like, “Duh! Of course I want ease!” But is that really what you’re choosing?
I’ve been asking myself this recently, in my journal. I just finished a huge project, a 31-day email course on writing that I poured my heart and soul into. It felt like an epic task.
Actually, the writing part wasn’t a struggle, really, as much as it was a hefty project that I set out to polish until it shines. Word-count-wise, for those who keep track of such things, the content of this course is the size of 1/3 of a whole book!
With BlackLion’s amazing tech wizardry help, I not only wrote and formatted it, but also set it up so that when students sign up for the course, they are automatically sent each day’s email, so they can begin whenever works best for them. The plan was to finish it before my daughter ElvenTiger’s visit home (she lives across the country now), and I did it!
I decided that for the two weeks she’s here, I’ll only work a couple of hours in the morning on weekdays – getting the word out about my offerings, working with clients, and interacting with the students who are taking the new course. I’ll spend the rest of my time, and the weekends, enjoying doing fun summer things with my girl and her boyfriend, and the extended tribe.
The vibe or intention I chose for this two-week time period – and ideally, life as a whole – is EASE.
Yet earlier this week I found myself wondering to my biz coach, “Is this okay? Do I really get to have ease?”
Being the powerful priestess she is, she immediately asked a bunch of questions, which became my fuel for writing about this whole ease vs. struggle thing.
Why is is that I harbor doubt that I “deserve” to have ease in my career? What are the beliefs behind it?
You see, we are surrounded by the cultural belief that we have to work hard, stress ourselves out, and even sacrifice our health or relationships in order to “succeed.” I think that’s an outdated belief. We human beings have a lot of those, and we like to hang onto them tightly.
In actuality, even with all the work facing us in terms of rebuilding our society to be more just, improving our treatment of the natural environment, and letting go of our unhealthy habits – even in the face of all that, there is room for ease. We need it.
In spite of what you might think, when we cultivate ease (and its companions: compassion, creativity, self-care, generosity, connection), we are actually more productive. We do better work. We have more of ourselves to give: to the world, our communities, our families, and ourselves.
When we find ease, we are coming from a place of love and caring, rather than fear and desperation.
That’s the vibe we want, both for our own sake and for the sake of the new, more conscious society we’re building.
And yet… Our monkey-minds default to the stress and pressure and go-go-go mentality, even if the conditions of our lives really don’t call for it. So, I’m deliberately grounding myself in ease.
Ease in my work, ease in my play, ease in my relationships, ease in household tasks and finances. A working staycation with those I love most. Lots of time in the river and the lake. Live music. Corn on the cob. AND success in my business.
This summer, I’m choosing ease, over and over again. I’ll let you know how it all turns out.
I wish you ease, too, and the ability to choose it.
(For curious writer types – I realize I kept the course kind of mysterious in this post. Here you go.)