12.5.18 - "Don't Buy The Fruit Stand"

Dear Sweet Babe,

Today I want to talk to you about indulgence.

For many people, temptation is something that is too tricky a mess to mess with. They look at any indulgence with a level of fear and apprehension. 

“What if I taste of the forbidden fruit and find I’ve developed a craving for it?”
“What if one day of sloth is enough to take me back to the body I hated?”
“What if I open myself up to an experience and find that I’m totally changed by it?”

Well, sweet one, that needling, those “what if” questions that buzz around you like gnats, are what is known as anxiety, and it needs to be dealt with. When we fear and worry and doubt about our future, and allow that anxiety to shape our decisions and actions in the present, then we’re letting the anxiety win. We must not let the anxiety win! We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!

There will always be the fear of the future. The fear of the unknowable is a staple of being alive…but the key is to find a way to deal with the fear. When you look into the future and see nothing but darkness, how do you find the courage to make proactive and positive choices? When all you can see is potential failure, how do you pick yourself up again and charge forward?

Well, you indulge. Just a little indulgence is all it takes. You take a moment of respite, and refocus. If fear of a new job or of a first date is getting you all squirrelly, take a moment and have a cookie, or buy yourself a hot cocoa. If doubt over your ability to complete a project or help someone you love has you needling late at night, watch your favorite tv show or read a book that has nothing to do with your worries. Take the time to find what makes you happiest, and indulge a little. It could be a sweet treat or a story; it could be time alone or a night out with good friends; it could be an hour long meditation, or a song that never fails to make you dance, or a good scream into a pillow. Take that indulgence, take that distraction, you deserve it.

But, keep in mind: balance is the true nature of happiness. Indulgence may feel great, and distraction may give you a moment of happiness, but too much of a good thing will spoil the goodness. It is perfectly fine to taste of the forbidden fruit…but don’t go to the fruit stand every day. Spending a day away from your daily exercise routine will not negate the work you’ve put into your body…but don’t go and cancel your gym membership. And, of course you will be changed by any and all experiences you go through…just try to make sure you are happy with the changes that you find (and if you aren’t, then keep experiencing and changing). You can take a step down any path and then decide to take a step back…or take five steps back, or you can straddle two paths at once, or even return to the beginning, just as long as you are doing your best to stay balanced.

Now, you may be like me and wonder, “well, if I can indulge, but I should be balanced, how do I know when I’ve crossed the line between indulging and over doing it?” And for that question I have no easy answer, because there is no definitive answer. You just have to feel it out, and then think it out. When you’re making a decision (Should I have another cookie? Should I watch another episode? Should I take another day off from exercise?), go with your gut and make the decision…but then don’t forget to think about how that decision turned out for you. Were you comfortable with the balance between what you got and what you lost? Can you find a better balance?

Basically, life isn’t easy, sweet babe, so please, be kind to yourself; treat yourself with an indulgence every once and a while…and then find your balance again.


Erik Schneider1 Comment