How do you fill your cup? What fills your soul? We all need to take time to fill ourselves up.
There are so many ways we can do this. Standing on top of a mountain seeing views for miles, listening to the ocean waves crashing, holding a child’s hand, lying in the arms of a lover until your heartbeats synchronize, sitting in church or temple and feeling the glory of God, camping in the desert or the woods and taking in the wonder of nature, taking a break from the day-to-day and spending time with people you adore.
It’s not so much how we do it, but that we take the time to do it.
What fills my cup might drain yours and vice versa. We all need to figure out what fills us up.
I spent last week filling my cup with music and great friends in an amazing city. I danced, I sang, I ate a million oysters, I strolled the French Quarter, I drank a Sazerac (or three), I had beignets and cafe au lait at Cafe DuMonde. I stood on the bank of the Mississippi River and marveled at it’s beauty, I wandered a couple of Voodoo shops.
As a single mom without another parent to share the responsibility, I don’t get breaks from parenting. I am blessed to have an incredibly easy, loving kid. And, I love to get away occasionally for an all-adult, weekend. I get to do this once or twice a year. These weekends pretty much always involve people I love to spend time with. Sometimes they are decadent concert weekends. Sometimes they are quiet, spiritual, contemplative yoga and meditation weekends. Both recharge me and top off my cup.
It took me a while to realize that self-care doesn’t have to equate to austerity. While some of my yoga/Ayurveda/health coach friends might look askance at my wild weekend in New Orleans, I know that I am being my authentic self (see my last post) and loving my life. I am an Enneagram type 7. A pleasure-seeker, a hedonist. No wonder I never felt quite right following a traditional Ayurvedic lifestyle. Don’t get me wrong – I love Ayurveda. And I love the fact that it’s not dogmatic and gives me a lot of wiggle room. I’ve had some Ayurvedic teachers who were more dogmatic than Ayurveda itself. Every time I heard the term, “non-negotiable,” from one of them, I immediately started looking for ways to negotiate.
If I come away from a weekend of Sex & Drugs & Rock and Roll (figuratively, of course!), feeling insanely happy and full of memories that last a lifetime, I feel no guilt about the fact that I ate dinner at 10 pm, day-drank and didn’t meditate. I’m home and I’m back to my healthy habits. One of the great things about living a life with healthy, Ayurvedic habits, is they stay with you, even when you go off. I had no concerns that I’d come back and continue to overindulge and stay up late or blow off my exercise routine. My good habits are well-enough ingrained in me, that I can go off, with little ill-effect and come right back to them.
Now for my Don’t Try This at Home, Kids lecture.
I’ve been working on health, Ayurveda, yoga and putting good habits in place for years. So, I can go off the proverbial wagon without losing everything I’ve worked towards. If you are new to trying to become the healthiest, happiest version of yourself, you might need to be stricter with things in the beginning. But the way I look at it, is the goal is not to give up things that are “bad for you,” forever, but to be grounded enough in your healthy habits that you can have the freedom to do whatever you want. On occasion.
It’s also important to find things to fill your cup, that are aligned with your habits. Yoga, meditation, being in nature, skiing – all fill my cup, in a much healthier fashion. And, as I mentioned earlier, what fills my cup may not fill yours. Maybe you love crafting. For me, just the thought of walking into Joanne’s makes me queasy. Maybe you are dying to go to Disney World; I’d rather put a sharp stick in my eye.
In my Whole Life Coaching program, we delve into all of these things. First we focus on physical health and getting healthy habits ingrained. We work on organizing our time, space, and finances. Then we move on to the really juicy stuff. What’s makes your heart sing? What fills your cup? How can you shape your life into exactly what you want it to be? I’ll show you how you can make the time to make your life work for you, instead of you working your life away. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.