I ran away more than once as a child.
Sometimes it was just packing a bag of snacks and fleeing to the woods for a few hours until I ran out of snacks. As I got older, it became a bit more dramatic.
Somedays my childhood fantasy of running away sneaks up again. Not in a ‘create a new identity and never look back’ kind of way. Just in a stressed out, this is all too much, wouldn’t it be nice to go live on an island and swim in the ocean all day kind of way.
Since I’m trying to successfully be an adult (whatever that really means), build an extra coat of resiliency, and not dash out the door – literally and figuratively – anytime things feel tough, I’ve created a little reminder of what to do when the urge to run for the hills comes a-calling.
No fancy technique needed. Just actual full breaths in and out. Bonus points if the air can be fresh, but at this point, any air will do. Change your breath and you can change your mind.
Remember Its just a phase
This too shall pass. It won’t last forever, even though in the depths of it sometimes it can seem like it may. Ebbs and flows, peaks and valleys, they’re all part of the path. Ride the wave. Keep going. You’re going to be okay, and then not okay, and then okay again. And, that’s okay. That’s life.
Make a Playlist
It’s indescribable how listening to a song can change everything. It’s said that a powerful enough song can even change your life. Music can even teach what humanity cannot always – how to be human, live, feel and love. I’d recommend to anyone that if things aren’t going right, and you don’t know what to do, just turn up some good music, and tune out for a few minutes before you attempt to figure everything out again. Music resonates with the heart, not just the head.
Move your body
Have a dance party to that playlist you made, go on a hike or a beach walk, rearrange furniture, go to a Hot Yoga class, scream into a pillow, whatever. Just work it out in your body. Move!
Get out of your own head. Call a supportive person in your life. Volunteer, make a donation, help out a stranger. Just do something to interrupt the loop you’re mind is running on and remember the bigger picture. We are here to be love and connect.
tAKE IT ALL in
Notice what’s good – within you and outside of you. Are you healthy? Do you have people that you love? Do they love you back? Is your fridge full? (Or at least, could it be full if you got up and went to the grocery store?) Decide what you’re grateful for, right now. Even though things aren’t perfect, even if you’re feeling a little lost.
Take a second to loosen the grip and let go. Acknowledge that it’s okay to surrender illusionary control over everything in life and discover a sense of comfort that accompanies believing in something bigger than yourself.
Give Yourself A Break
Don’t beat yourself up for feeling your feelings. (After all, that’s the point of feelings in the first place). Let them in, let them out. Grant yourself permission to go through what you’re going through without piling guilt, shame, and added pressure on top.
It’s time now, take off your running shoes, unload your getaway bag, put on your favorite pair of sweats, and just keep doing the best you can.