I am at my most powerful when I am working with life rather than against it. -Anita Moorjani
I’ve been thinking a lot aboutBEING vs. doing lately.
For the longest time, I’ve believed that BEING literally meant sitting in silence and trying not to attach to the endless thoughts swirling in my mind. I thought that BEING meant I had to be still and do nothing. That belief prompted me to take up meditation, and for some time I’ve had a regular practice of staying still and mindful for 10 minutes a day.
However, seconds after the meditation is done, I pop up and start DOING like a maniac for the rest of the day. Anyone who knows me will tell you that I move fast — can get more done before lunchtime than most people can tackle in a whole day.
Recently though, I read a life changing book called Dying to Be Me about a woman’s near-death experience. In her amazing journey she learned the true meaning of BEING vs DOING.
Living in a BEING state does not mean that you have to sacrifice being productive. In fact, it’s the opposite. It means that you stay with whatever you’re feeling inside in that present moment and act from that place. DOING is a future-oriented state that means no matter what you’re feeling, you disregard that and do your tasks with a belief that you’ll feel better or make space for your emotions at some point in the future.
So what does this actually mean?
Well, I used to wake up each day and disregard how I was feeling in order to get as much done as possible. If I felt melancholy, I would snap out of it and become falsely perky to coach my clients. If I had low energy, I would override the lethargy and force myself to do all my tasks, no matter what. If there was nothing truly to say, I would still force conversation to fill up the silence.
But thanks to this new insight, more recently I’ve been experimenting with really noticing, honoring and staying with my authentic feelings, and then “doing” from that place. If I feel a bit sad, I stay with that energy and coach anyway. To my surprise, my sessions go just as well but I’m not as exhausted afterwards because I forced myself into a DOING state.
If I feel like taking a short nap, I allow myself to honor that need rather than feeling guilty and not resting. It’s been amazing! Living in a being state has allowed me to do a ton without feeling as exhausted and I’ve been pleasantly surprised to see that my true emotional state can lead me to very successful outcomes.
So my question to you is: how can you honor your true state and act from that place? Where do you force yourself into a DOING state and what are your beliefs around that? What would happen if you acted from your truth and did not try to force yourself out of your authentic state? What is the cost of always DOING, DOING, DOING? What does it keep you from experiencing in your life? What worries you about honoring your emotions, the light and the dark, even more in your life?
I welcome your thoughts and invite you to join in this truly transformative and liberating experiment!
Après is your savvy friend who sends you a weekly email to help you navigate the exciting, challenging and momentous journey that is Career + Motherhood.