The physical ways we’re being asked to be more real are pretty obvious, like roots growing out, mustaches and eyebrows growing in, hair remaining disheveled for days on end. But what about all the other ways we’re being asked to show our realness, too?
Ok, so let’s talk about how REAL this COVID time is asking us to be. I mean, people, I’m even talking about little stuff like eyebrows!
It seems I’ve inherited my grandfather’s eyebrows as I’ve gotten older. I have these renegade curly cues that grow out course and white and rapidly work their way up my forehead or down in front of my eyes! I kid you not! It’s usually when they start working their way into my field of vision that I’m reminded it’s time to go have them addressed.
But during COVID-19 time, I’m on my own with these renegades! Four weeks in and I’m practically blinded by these hairs! I know I need to take care of them, yet the last time I did that on my own, let’s just say I ended up practically eyebrow-less.😳
(I am officially accepting eyebrow trimming tutorials from those of you who are experts.)
The physical ways we are being asked to be more real are pretty obvious, like roots growing out, mustaches and eyebrows growing in, hair remaining disheveled for days on end, etc. I sure know I’ve been wearing my MOST comfortable, LEAST hip clothing daily since all this started!
But what about all the other ways we’re being asked to show our realness, too?
I find myself thinking a lot about the default mode way that I lived my life in my younger days. I was desperate to look like I had everything together. I didn’t want my ‘flaws’ to be visible to the outside world. While I’ve lost this need to seem flawless over the last couple of decades, I feel the frustration of not being able to feel competent in the way I often do because my old normal is currently missing.
And I’m betting you’re feeling pretty darn triggered right now If you’re someone who has been accustomed to trying to look or feel like you’ve got everything handled and together and running perfectly as you juggle your work, the household, the kids, your partner, your pets, the finances, etc. Do you know why you feel triggered? Because this is a time when it’s IMPOSSIBLE to have it all together. And in truth, I’m not sure any of us was ever MEANT to have it all together!
Suddenly in this new climate, life feels unworkable. Because you don’t have it all together. It isn’t feeling smooth. Your normal groove is totally gone and you don’t yet have a new groove. And it’s all happening in such a nonstop, isolated setting that you’re actually starting to feel pissed that anyone is EXPECTING you to have it all together, including you!
But it also feels disorienting and foreign. It feels distressing to have your ’imperfections’ laid so bare for you and others to see when you’ve tried to keep them out of sight for so long.
But what if this forced realness we’re experiencing is leading us to a different way of living? What if this experience we are in is growing new and beautiful possibilities inside each of us? One of those possibilities might just include more realistic, soul-nourishing expectations of ourselves and our lives.
Being forced to slow down this much really puts in our face just how fast we’ve all been living, huh? It suddenly brings to light so many expectations we‘ve placed on ourselves or accepted from others for eons. And it invites us to reexamine whether these expectations are ones we even want to keep.
It’s through the slowing down that we discover just how much we’ve been living like ‘perpetual-doing machines’. When we ALLOW ourselves to rest in the being, clarity about the doing quietly slips in. Suddenly doing becomes more intentional rather than reactive and automatic.
So I ask you, what’s showing up in your face right now? Is it reflecting certain expectations you’ve felt responsible to meet for ages, yet you find yourself feeling guilty, resentful or downright angry about them now? Maybe it’s related to your work, your kids, your partner, your friends, the culture or even the whole external world.
Regardless of what life department it lands in, I invite you to become curious about whether the expectations you’ve been trying to meet are ones you’d like to keep in the first place.
If this feels easy to explore on your own, great! Run with it and see where you land.
Or does the thought of trying to figure out one more thing on your own feel totally overwhelming? If your life feels gripped by the anxiety and stress that accompany this weight of expectations and your aching to find relief, let me help you.
DM me or call my office (828-505-0402) and we’ll find a time to connect virtually. You can fill me in on what you’re dealing with and we can talk about what it would look like for me to be a support to you right now. I’d love to connect.
So here’s to our wild eyebrows! And to the subtler ways we’re each being invited to step into new levels of realness with updated expectations. This might just be changing our lives in some soul-nourishing ways.😍
P.S. If you’ve been enjoying my weekly blogs and are itching for more daily inspiration, friend me on Facebook (Emily Colwell) or follow me on Instagram (dr.emily_colwell). I post frequently and humor leaks into most of my posts!
Emily Colwell, MSSW, ND
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