Kayak Paddles

Today I got to work with a coach: Robin Olson. We were working with a goofy and eye rolling reality that plagued me this week. It seems that after 3 months of mindfully eating my way into new and fabulous habits (no sugar, reduced wine, no chocolate, less food) I was stunned into excess. And it came on the heals of a fabulous 3 day Qi Gong intensive.

Really. 3 days of intensive body/mind/spirit/work and I come home and over the course of the week have a cookie, a cupcake, a glass of wine, shrimp, tons of cheese.

The question was “Why?”

I’m not beating myself up. In fact, one of the first thing this fine coach did was affirm and celebrate that I am nipping the backslide in the bud, getting back on track. Yay. Go me.

We talked through what I was experiencing. And that is what I really wanted to share with you, my readers.

I have old habits. I’m 55 so have had quite a long time to develop various ways of interacting with food and energy. Excess has been a trait of mine for a multitude of reasons, all of which I have faced down and am on the right side of overcoming. Great. So what happened with the Qi Gong intensive that set me back.

This is my theory:

Qi Gong cultivates energy that flows, and qi gong breathing oxygenates the system. It is a high. It feels great. It is like breathing and utilizing pure energy. I only have 3 months of hard fought practices of eating what serves me and leaving what does not, so I think my system went where it knew best, conditions of plenty and excess as comfort and accommdation. That is the land of no restrictions. I like sugar, wine, coffee, shrimp, cheese and chocolate. Yum. But they are not quality foods that serve me and boy could I tell a difference after having been off them (ok, 80% off of them) for 3 months.

What do I need to do now? In addition to the new patterns and new behaviors, I need to create a new mindset.

A mindset that redefines what plenty means.

A mindset that can taste abundance in quality and in service to my body.

A mindset that can navigate the obstacles, like a kayaker in a river of huge rocks, in order to get to the smooth, broad river beyond.

So, that is my work for the week.

The image of a kayak paddling on a rocky river came through Coach Robin helping me get a visual to use as a touchstone this week as I pay attention. I then made this so I could really use it…

Obstacles Discipline Qi Flow_ I got this.png

That is what I’m talking about. Obstacles can kill us. But the paddle is going to direct, slow down, speed up, turn around, and guide with expertise my way through to the other side. In this case, the paddle is the Qi Gong forms that I’ve learned and have committed to doing for 100 days. Doing them in the morning allows a built in guide to focus my day and choices. Obstacles, discipline, and Qi flow inevitably arrives at health.

I’m pretty confident that I’ll do pretty well. I’ll also fail a bit. But I don’t expect to die. So, there is that.

Here we go!