So here I am, at my first band gig this year (Jan). Urgh why did I choose shorts that day … so unprofessional! Oh yes I remember … it was that looooong dragged out summer where every 5 days mother nature gave us a 40 degree day. That’s 104 degrees imperial folks!
And I do not handle myself very well in heat. My ideal temperature floats around 20.
I did a few more sweaty shows that month, and while I was amazed I could still sing … my clothes were amazed at how much I could sweat.
Yep. I created some unforgettable memories. I think anything I do in relation to music gets seriously tattooed to my brain. I LOVE IT!!!
So anyway … yes I write this with an intentional topic in mind: RESPECT and TRUST.
Flashback to Dec 2016. The world was freaking out to Trump being elected. Massive crazy extreme weather creating chaos. The Syrian refugees. Women’s rights. Holy golly. I couldn’t help but wonder at the chaos of the world, and how the chaos of my personal world were somewhat on par.
There were illnesses in the family. I was struggling to breathe in my career. My stress levels weren’t calming down. And I wasn’t practicing enough for my shows. My thoughts were a constant negative mess. And my emotional state was just wobbling all over the place. I headed straight for a nervous breakdown.
So I took some time off. Told the world I needed alone time (more than usual). And really seriously contemplated my future, and how my (then) present got to be so chaotic.
Folks, I gave myself permission to rest, to say no, and to just back away from everything. Because I needed it. My body was aching. And so was my mind. I didn’t feeling guilty like I used to, like I owed the world my presence (or some bullshit).
And in retraining my brain over the last 2-3 years, I’ve realised that, yes there are bad time, yes I will feel down and find it difficult to get out of bed … but no, they don’t define me anymore, and no, I won’t subject myself to unrealistic demands, mostly created by me. Treating myself with respect, and trusting in my own abilities to get through the tough times, I choose me and put myself first.
I worked out what I needed to do, and change the things that were no longer working for me. It took well over a month worth of planning and thinking, and a heck of a lot of uncertainty to put my foot down. But I trusted me, and I respected what my body was telling me, thus I was able to make decisions that were healthier for me.
This is why I think the concept of respect and trust, for yourself, for others, need to be taught. And talked about.
It is the foundation where self confidence stems from …
It is the framework for healthy relationships …
Without which you’ll lead a stressful life, unhappy relationships, difficulties at work, high levels of self doubt … I’m sure you’ve read and experienced a number of those.
When I took on the guitar in my late 20’s, I wasn’t only learning about how to play the guitar. I was learning about myself, and getting to know who I really am and finally acknowledging myself. I didn’t have the guts before that. For some, that ‘guitar’ might be exercise, yoga, travelling …
This is an example I keep referring to, because like what they teach in mindfulness (not the pop quiz kind), I found my flow and peace in playing my guitar. I was essentially giving my mind a rest and focusing it on the one activity.
It starts here. Acknowledging yourself. What your body is feeling at this very moment. Because this is quantifiable. Your stress, the chaos out there, that stuff is endless, where do you begin and end with it?
So you must do what you can … which is tuning in to yourself. And you owe it to yourself to find what that tuning in technique is. I bet you already know it … but because you haven’t been thinking about it, it’s currently out of reach. But it’s in there, waiting for you to dig it up.
Guess what you need to do that? Yep. Rest.
Respect and trust yourself, you are important and what you feel is absolutely valid, true and deserves to be heard. When you let yourself feel these things, over time, you’ll understand how others feel and feel connected to people. Connection builds trust, and trust leads to care and love. Out of that grows respect. Oh yeah, it’s a cycle, but such a healthy and sustainable one don’t you think?