Frankly, My Dear, I Don’t Give A Damn

[Dutch Lock Down Day Two Hundred Fifty Four]

Photo by Ravi Roshan on Unsplash

Yes, I forgot to write yesterday until it was time for bed, past time for bed, in fact, and then, instead of staying up even later, I took a deep breath in, let it out, accepted that I wouldn’t write today’s post today, and went to bed.

So today’s post is care of tomorrow and you’re reading this from the future.

Ain’t. Life. GRAND.

This week, in pursuit of the Farmer Project, I dove into radical compassion and, orthogonally related, discovering another word for self-improvement.

But first the news:

I don’t like the word self-improvement.

It implies that you’re less than now and once you completely self-improvement, you’ll be better than.

And growth reminds me too much of plants. I kill plants. Also, why is a bit of height or a step towards death, without any effort, considered a good thing. And what’s the opposite? When I’m not growing, I’m … shrinking?

No.

Photo by Kyle Glenn on Unsplash

I want to figure out how to engage in self compassion and SIMULTANEOUSLY engage in self improvement. And I THINK that part of that has to do with that second word, self improvement.

FURTHER, a friend who is totally kickass at meditation and self compassion (and psychology and ballet!) commented on one of my previous blogs about the pursuit of self compassion with regards to self improvement, that her experience is that the self improvement happens on its own, when you’re engaging in self compassion.

As a kind of bonus.

And since I need to find a new word for self-improvement, I thought I’d do an experiment. I opted to focus ONLY on self-compassion this week. And kind of gently observe, without judgement, how much I actually exercised and walked and drink water and ate healthily and otherwise took care of myself and others around me.

And then while I was busy listening to The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks and reading There Is Nothing Wrong With You by Cheri Huber, it hits me.

EXPANSION

Which, sure, my initial reaction is that it’s a bit heeby jeeby to my taste.

Isn’t that a bit judgy, Leander?

Where’s the self-compassion?

Fine.

I let it percolate.

And, damn, it sinks in.

Because the opposite is contraction.

And when you’re expanding, you’re getting bigger and making connections and broadening your horizons and reaching out and up and down and everywhere and BEYOND and when you’re contracting, you’re getting smaller and shrinking and little and curling into your own little bubble and focused on yourself because focusing on others or solving puzzles or getting out of bed and flying among the stars is exhausting.

It resonates.

And suddenly, when I ask myself, “Where shall I go? What shall I do?”

I’m not so much callous and cold and awful as delighted and playful and warm.

I’ll go ANYWHERE.

I’ll do ANYTHING.