May Work Release

Okay, wellness enthusiasts, let us be accountable. May is finished. It’s time to show our work.

Occupational/Financial Wellness

The Spending Fast continues with purchases for essentials only. Essentials this month included a ladder, spackle, sandpaper, and paint to repair my kitchen ceiling. Intense sunlight through a nearby door caused some cracking and peeling. Or as I like to put it, my kitchen ceiling got a sunburn. Left unattended it just got worse and worse until the paint (skin) started to flake, dangle, and shed, which looked like big ugly holes. I might have ignored it until our remodel if some of the open wounds weren’t located directly over the food prep areas. Digesting paint flakes is not part of my wellness practice, so I climbed my new ladder and DIYed the repairs myself.

Mindful of my Fast, I didn’t give in to temptation to go overboard. Though the urge was strong while standing in the home improvement store, I fought the good fight. I bought only what I absolutely needed and then got the hell out of there. Since I’m not yet ready to tackle the whole room (and plans are not finalized for the bigger project to come) I bought only enough goop and goo for the repair and will re-appropriate the small amount of leftovers for repairs in other rooms. Now I have freshly primed and spot-painted bright white cloud blobs up there waiting for the remodel. Receipts including the ladder were under $100. Those blobs that don’t quite blend with the old paint don’t bother me nearly as much as being in debt, so I look up and smile at them and consider patience with this phase to be part of my practice.

We inch ever closer to cutting the cord to the overpriced TV/phone/internet bundle at the Jesus Crack House. Near the end of the month we began taking advantage of the free trials offered by the alternative service providers. In June we will make a final decision on it but I feel strongly that the days of paying for 5000 channels when we really only watch five of them are almost over. And I’m more than happy to stay a season or two behind on the few serials that we do follow. In some cases we’ve discovered that it is less expense to buy them individually than pay for a year’s subscription to the entire channel. We will pull the trigger on this in June when our free trials expire so more to come on slashing waste in the entertainment realm.

Spiritual Wellness

More of the usual: simple, sacred, strong. Meditation in many forms, including the traditional seated kind and the walking around kind, music therapy, energy work, making fire, making things grow, singing, and study.

Physical Wellness

Not much changed in my physical practice this month. But if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?  My early morning gym partner continues to rise to meet me at 5 am. I continue to rise to join her.  Since we’ve been stomping out a 5k every morning anyway I agreed to meet her one fine Saturday this month for a charity event sponsored by a mutual friend. It was her first 5k finish. I lost count of how many 5ks I’ve finished many years ago. I did it for her; not for the achievement.

Photo May 13, 8 28 03 AM

Home yoga practice continues, almost daily. My knee injury has improved enough that there are now zero poses from my previous repertoire that I cannot practice. Whoo hoo!

Intellectual Wellness

The lion’s share of this practice continue to be writing for this blog and now writing for my family. My sister challenged us all to start writing down shared events in our family’s history from our own perspectives so we could compare them (and no doubt argue about them) and preserve them for future generations. Each week we all work on a particular memory or famous family legend and turn it in like homework via email. It’s become something of a dual practice in that it bolsters the family bonds while flexing my writing muscles.

I continue to follow many other writers as well, keeping me stimulated and informed on topics that boost intellect and creativity and grow my understanding of the world I inhabit. The easiest way to do this continues to be a self-regulating blog reader. I get an update notification when there is something new so I don’t have to waste time surfing or checking if there isn’t. It’s also easy to curate with new interests or edit when someone or something no longer feels relevant to my practice. I use Feedly for this but there are lots of good ones out there.

Social Wellness

After a conversation with a friend who pulls no punches, I realized that I’m doing more harm than good by shunning social media altogether. It was pointed out to me that I can’t help anyone — not even by example — if my work isn’t available to anyone who doesn’t already know where to find it. If my heart’s desire is to help people be well, I need to put my words where they can be read by people. The people of the world are occupying social media. My words aren’t going to change/support/heal/help unless I offer them in places where people are most likely to read them, which is on social media. I already know the world prefers to get its information via one kind of source, so abstaining completely means no one gets a chance to be helped and I get no chances to be a helper. That was a bitter pill to swallow but swallow it I did.

Turning over a new, less stubborn leaf, I acquired new accounts. All of them are maintained as The Renaissance Heart and they are all designed to be an extension/outreach of this blog’s work. This means messages of wellness, albeit with pretty pictures. And I did miss making pretty pictures, so this practice also does dual duty as creativity/intellectual wellness.

The collage above is a mash-up of my social media dispatches from last week, which are not necessarily duplicated here because they are not blog-length. You are welcome to follow but be advised, it’s all directly related to wellness or it is not posted. Direct links are available on this site’s home page, titled Social Media Links. And yes, of course I’ll need to go back to soften some of the harsh language I spewed during my initial break-up with social media and these many months of recovery. This too is part of the practice; lessons we learn over and over again.

So that’s my work for May. I left out the most repetitive parts of the practice to keep this from being too tedious to read. It can get redundant so I gave you a break from the same list/different month routine. But remember that every part of our practice is important, including the things that feel small, mundane, or are so intensely personal that they probably don’t make sense to anyone else. Each of the different aspects of our practice are interdependent. Embrace them all.

— Mercy

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