Fighting the Force

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And I’m not taking about Star Wars.

We all have different driving forces. Whether it is living up to society’s standards, hitting a monetary mark, or purely for self-admiration, there is something that pushes each of us to achieve.

Well, stripping away my bi-montly paycheck and damning society’s standards to Hell has taught me a thing or two about driving forces.

Here is what I’ve learned: Don’t Force It.

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This idea first came to me during a yoga class. My instructor said that if we needed to take a break and come out of a pose, to please do so. “Don’t force it” he said, because sometimes you just aren’t in the right mental state to complete every pose to your deepest ability. My teacher even went on to suggest that we thank ourselves for respecting our body’s wishes, as it stopped us from forcing ourselves into a potentially harmful position.

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I realized how much this lesson applied to my writing. Although my goal is to write one post each day, I have found that if I am not in the right headspace, it is not happening. And that is perfectly OK. Better in fact, because it means that what I do write comes easily and naturally, producing higher quality content. Some days I write five posts, some days I watch three-hours of Grey’s Anatomy and write none…it is called balance. And, in the end, it all evens out.

The best way I learned to not force it was in making flexible to-do lists. I would map out my week and would leave room for changes. I understood that my goal was to complete the entire list by Friday, but sometimes that meant completing tasks in an order different from what was originally planned. For example, if Thursday was the day to run errands and Tuesday was the day to bust out a week’s worth of blog posts, then I would aim to complete it in that order. But if, come Tuesday, it was a beautiful day and I wanted to see more of the world than just my computer screen, I could swap Thursday’s work for Tuesday’s and get outside. The aim is to make completing your to-do list as pleasurable as possible.

I also extended my rule of don’t force it to my hair and makeup. My mom is constantly trying to make her hair do things that goes against its will. Despite her best efforts to straighten, perm, or blow dry her hair into submission, by the end of the day, it seems to have a will of its own. Again, don’t force it. I understand that my hair has a natural wave to it, so when I go into the hair salon, I am sure to ask for lots of layers that will play up that wave. I do my best to work with what I was given.

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The same goes for makeup. Instead of fighting my big lips with layers of concealer, I enhance them with a glossy balm. Instead of covering my freckles with foundation, I let them shine barefaced. So forego spending an hour contouring and strobing your face into perfectly chiseled submission, and spend that time doing something you love.

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Sometimes you just have to make life a little easier on yourself and go with the flow instead of forcing things.

-TM

What do you not force in life? Let us know below.

 

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