Reflecting on Tools: Writing vs Sports

When one is building a new skill, it’s necessary to minimise as many factors as possible. For instance, I have been leaning on sports for as long as I can remember as an emotional processing tool. Yes, I love sports. Yes, sports make me feel better. The underlining reasoning for doing sports was a constructive channel to focus energy. Productive in terms of building as opposed to developing addictions to a vice. An addiction nonetheless.

Today I had a fantastic moment of revelation. I was a bit down about my current fitness level. Then I started questioning why I was still prioritizing writing to sports training. Then it hit me. I realised I wanted to be authentic. I was trying to do the hard thing. I wanted to dig deep and adding sports into the mix prevented my deep dive. Sports is an easy way to manage emotions. Really upset, go for a run. Pissed off, grab my climbing kit. Feeling disconnected, meet some friends for beach volleyball. Feeling unbalanced, disappear in the woods or find a sandy beach. Watch the world turn whilst breaking a sweat. My life is active and filled with supportive people blissfully unaware of the magic they bring into my life.

Sports were my crutch for 20 years. It was my easy way of dealing with life. No shame but as all things, I needed to add new tools to my box. So I opted for writing. It’s an ambiguous craft. No rules, really. I can expand via blog, simplify via poetry or simply walk down memory lane via reading old journal entries… anything to get the feels out of my heart and onto a page. Doing sport prevented me from doing that, so I stopped. At least for a short while.

Last weekend, I was feeling a bit overwhelmed and disconnected. Being mindful I couldn’t have a rational conversation because I was in an emotional state, I opted for silence. I was attempting to gather my thoughts. I wasn’t trying to convert whatever was bothering me into something positive. I was just observing and allowing whatever needed to flow, flow.

It was beautiful. It was ugly. It was intense. It was real.

I didn’t hurt anyone because I didn’t project this wave to the outside world. I saved the words in my journal and then just bookmarked for later. After the wave, I opted to throw myself into something creative. I opted to change all the pictures on a wall. The pictures used to hold memories from childhood now hold smiles of connections as an adult. My wall of love. My wall reminds me of the good. Especially when my heart thinks I’m alone.

I never want to control these waves. I don’t think there is anything wrong with them. Honestly speaking, I think they are beautiful and each wave reinforces just how strong I really am. I have the ability to lash out and hurt others, I choose not to. I have the ability to project pain onto others, I choose not to. I have the ability to create a mountain out of a molehill, I choose not to.

I’ve been conditioned to keep my feelings to myself. Have you ever had someone high-jack your moment? You finally gather up the courage to express yourself and they start yelling at you? You are called all sorts of names, belittled and made to feel guilty for even thinking anything less than the one who caused the hurt is magical. Because really, you should be lucky they even allow you in their world. Complain? How dare I. (yeah, unraveling this false truth takes time). Even now, my abuse is reinforced because each time I say ‘no’ to someone acting as a friend, they betray me. Good riddance for sure but in the back of my mind, I question if I’m the problem. Scratch that, I’m allowed to say no. Most people think I’m the strongest person in the world; I mostly agree based on my ability to examine and execute but my success is based on knowing myself (including my limits).

I digress.

The moral of the story is I’m in control of observing (or reacting). Fortunately, I am more observant than I am reactive. And that in itself is something to appreciate. I do not have the confidence to share my feelings with others. I’m working on it.

I shared a few words at the start of my lets ‘unveil the crazy’ to the world-daily-posts aka NaNoWriMo. I was balanced and controlled. You can sense the flow in my words but also feel something is being held back. This was the first stage in my unveiling. There is absolutely nothing wrong with me other than the fact I had (and still have faith) in my journey. I know my truths are too much for some people. I understand setting boundaries will cause certain friendships to dissolve. I also understand anyone who projects anything other than love, is no longer welcomed in my space. Mine is a personal journey I choose to share with the world. To this day, I still receive more support than criticism. And for that, I’m so very grateful; sharing my story has empowered others to live their truth.

I have a sunny disposition to life and lead with my heart. My sharing doesn’t mean I’m broken. My sharing means that I am looking for a new way to carry my burden before it destroys me. And for that, how could anyone fault me for acknowledging that I’m no longer strong enough to bare such pain alone? I have built a community and started attracting kindred spirits based on my sharing… my writing resonates with others. It’s kind of beautiful to think about connecting with complete strangers outside of a support group.

I guess what I’m trying to say is THANK YOU. Thank you for sharing this journey. Whether it’s a nod, like, direct message, spiritual shout-out, or smirk… I appreciate all the good vibes flowing my way. Rest easy; I’m constantly blasting love to you, my readers and supporters.

Much love. Always.

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