I had a little wander and reflective pause this morning out at one of our retreat venues. A perfect location to do some soul searching and I was ready for it.
It has been such a strange and challenging time over the last eighteen months for all of us, but strangely (although not so strange as I will explain in a moment), the last few weeks coming out the other side have been equally if not more challenging for me, to the point of me wondering what I am doing, questioning my business and what I am doing and generally feeling a tad overwhelmed. Speaking to other HSP's, I know I am not on my own with this.
As an HSP (highly sensitive person) business owner, I know that I have to follow a different set of parameters, but it doesn't stop me from falling into a common trap for us HSPs, a trap of comparing ourselves to other less sensitive people, a trap of "am I doing enough?", "why can't I do as much as such and such?" or "I don't think this is working anymore". As things have sped up over the last month, so has my inner critic, telling me I should be doing more.
Luckily over the years, I have come to see the warning signals quickly, time to pause.
The truth is HSP's can run amazingly successful businesses, we can be amazingly supportive, it is no surprise that a lot of us become helpers, teachers, those that support. BUT, and it is a big BUT, we need to let go of a fixed set of so-called rules about how we live our lives and at times, let go of society's expectation of how we define happiness and success. It is perhaps going to look a whole lot different to others and in that is something so unique and wonderful.
One of the first things I coach people through is the ability to pause, to know when to stop.
Imagine going to watch a film at the cinema with your friend. The first half is really not good and you find it a challenge to watch so leave halfway through and wait out in the foyer for your friend to join you. As they come out they wonder why you left so early "the second half was amazing, what a fabulous film!"
This is often a common scenario for the HSP, we get overwhelmed, the emotions run high and we move, we change, we get out of there. Now maybe in some cases that is just what we need to do but there may be other times when just waiting for the overwhelm to subside, for the balance to return, to take a good old pause before making any decisions, maybe that is just what is required for us to be able to see clearly again, to see all the pathways available to us.
I like to get out into nature, to sit by a stream or lake, or under a favourite tree, regular pause moments to reset and restore.
Sometimes it needs something longer, a retreat for the morning or day, just creating some space and time to just be.
Time out and switching off
However much I try not to compare myself to others, we live in a media world where we can be constantly on for 24hours a day. Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, the news, so on and so forth. There have been times when I have almost observed myself on autopilot, reaching for the phone, scrolling for no reason.
Learning to switch off is perhaps one of the most important things for us HSPs. Dedicating some time in the week to switch it all off. I have to remind myself of this when the overwhelm appears, it is ok to switch off and I want you to know that also.
So I suppose my little pause today is an invitation, an invitation whether you are HSP or not, find what works for you, don't be afraid to follow a different set of rules, yours, find what it is that you need in order to thrive and flourish.
An invitation to reset and restore, to leave behind comparison and exhaustion, to know that it is all ok, whatever speed you want to go at, to realign with meaning, values and what is right for you.
If I go quiet, you know where I will be 😉
For now, I wish you well and may you have a most lovely bank holiday weekend, from R 🌳
Roger coaches HSP's (highly sensitive persons) and those that want to restore some balance, manage overwhelm and to rediscover the joy of living.
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