I was surprised by just how much I stopped over the break. I took a full month off and usually my mind keeps ticking throughout with ideas and possibilities. The hum of intellectual energy just quietens rather than disappears. Not this break. It just completely shut down.
At first I noticed some guilt. What does this say about me as a thought leader if I can be so brain dead? Then some fear. What if it never turns back on? And then some knowing. This is exactly what I need to restore my energy levels.
The contrast was telling. I became present to just how much I crank myself up day in day out with the work I do. And how addicted I am to the dopamine bursts that come from getting stuff done. I love almost every minute of it, no doubt. But it comes with a cost. Bigger energy drops, and reactivity and agitation, especially with my daughter. Do I really need to be in such an elevated state, so often? It’s all manufactured after all.
So in 2021 I’m going to pay more attention to my energy levels with the intention of smoothing the cycles between peak and trough. My primary practice is a new discipline around meditation (shorter sittings, regular glimpses) alongside my ongoing practice of learning the theory (some new books on order and lots of time spent on the Waking Up app).
First week back in the office and I feel calm. Like all things, it won’t last. But by paying attention to my practice with a clear intention of greater energy balance, I know it will serve me well.
What do you need to pay attention to this year? What intention can you channel?