So I take a 5K run every weekend - the same route every time. (My husband calls it "The Jeremy Classic.") I have chosen this route because it maximizes exposure to green spaces, and, as it seems, lilac bushes. This Sunday I had the slowest time perhaps ever on my run despite recently working on speed.
Yet I was thrilled!
I can't count how many lilacs I must have smelled on my route. I have slowed down to smell them before, but this was the first year that I would shamelessly stop and stuff my nose into bunches of lilacs, regardless of who was walking by or who was standing out in their yard or whatever. Yards with multiple bushes... multiple stops.
It was amazing.
Amazing because I find the scent of lilacs heavenly. But also amazing because I really let myself claim the experience. I didn't give it away for fear of embarrassment, or to run faster, or because I thought I was being silly. Yes, a part of me sometimes felt embarrassed. Sure, I sometimes felt a little silly. And I ran slow as molasses. That's all true. It's not that I didn't care - it's that I didn't let it steal the experience from me. I claimed it, every step of the way.
In my work with clients, I often ask people to do things that they have avoided for fear of embarrassment, feeling silly (or "stupid"), or because life otherwise seems to go so fast they don't feel permitted to actually [breathe... feel... remember something... stretch... rest... fill in the blank...]. We have developed our ways of keeping ourselves in some type of comfort zone, some type of self-prescribed confinement, some type of smaller life. At some point, it may have been a helpful strategy. But now, it requires insight, energy and courage to stretch these barriers back out.
This is why I love this work. Over time, my life has gotten (and continues to get) to be and feel bigger. I watch my clients' lives expand and become larger. We move through the judgments, outdated beliefs and frozen patterns in our bodies that have kept us living smaller than we are, and we find more. More of everything. It's not always easy. But it is our birthright.
So, if you have lilacs growing in your front yard - THANK YOU. You gave me another opportunity to take more of my life back last weekend. If you'd also like help taking more of your life back, feel free to call and consider if this work might be for you. Do you have an experience you'd like to share in which you felt your life get bigger? Please leave a comment below! Let's encourage each other...