When You’re Tired of Trying
The antidote to exhaustion isn’t resting. It’s wholeheartedness. Crouched down in a clump of leaves in the woods, I saw a woodpecker. Persistent, unbothered, down a tree next to me. It is methodically tapping its beak bit-by using-bit seeking out something to eat. I watch and wonder… Aren’t you bored with this relentless pursuit?
Tired of crushing your face again and again with the odds stacked against you? How fleeting disappointment must be for you?
Not me. I take one bump, and the frustration reels through me. I desperately seek ease, my eyes usually halfway staring at elsewhere looking for relief, questioning after I can stop trying so hard.
My mom used to talk about her persistent struggles like “smashing your head right into a brick wall.”
But you (woodpecker) don’t seem to be struggling or frustrated. You virtually flow on the moment by way of second in pursuit, unbothered by the repetition of trying again and again. Not concerned approximately what occurs ahead, what the outcome of each tap in opposition to the tree is. This is your existence, the continual pursuit of nourishment moment to moment.
Tap, tap, tap—search for food. Tap, tap, tap—try once more. No time for disappointments. That could be silly, counterproductive to the dwelling.
Today early morning, my body was already humming with strain. My infant crying, children fighting, another night time without sleep.
I am 6 months postpartum with baby number 3, and I have been struggling to alter to my new existence. All my energy has long gone into trying to cope, provide for, and nourish my growing circle of relatives.
I am speculated to have it together at this point in my lifestyles, and I should have made a few progress by now. I wasn’t thought to strive this tough. I teach people how to manage their stress through art! But today I can’t step out of my very own fog. I can’t direct myself time to create and breathe, and I am just much tired.
We hear the word “grind” plenty those days. A collective acknowledgement that everyday dwelling in the western world is full of bumps, abrasions, and sparks. The perception that not all pressure comes from the massive dramatic life moments of life and death, pain, and suffering. Much of it comes from the momentary power we put into seeking to form and live on in our day to day lives.
The information of my existence’s challenges are specific and precise to me, but most folks can relate to this sense of a boiling factor—in which we can’t take it anymore, in which the strain is simply too much, and we’re bored with attempting. Each folks dances among our very own tiny-tales of conflict and pleasure in a day.
Sometimes coffee isn’t enough.
Sometimes extra sleep can’t assist.
Sometimes it looks like all my trying is the simplest, making it worse. Like there is no impact on, no mark I can make on this international, or in my life.
Sometimes all my therapy, good advice are just beyond my reach.
Sometimes I am locked in a moment in which showing gratitude feels like a boulder I simply can’t lift.
It’s so difficult to pick out your self back up whilst all you want to do is near your eyes and find a few quiet.
Usually, I am the sort of man or woman who thinks that change is always possible, that my ache is fleeting, that upgrades can generally be made. That it’s my obligation to try and make the world a better place.
My husband and I joke that we’re continuously tweaking things looking for a higher glide in our lives. We are continually informing each other that we have made a new change for something in our home, moving a pot from its old drawer to a new one, seeking to make new structures for managing the chaos of laundry, kids, and our lives. We simply keep trying.
We each preserve a sincere notion that with every new tweak, it’ll enhance things for us. It’s without difficulty one in each of our first-rate attributes as a couple, and we are both consistently interested in bettering ourselves, our lives, and our community. We recognize that we have agency and have an effect on our earth, so we strive to use it for right.
But it’s additionally a trap. A set up for sadness. Call it attachment, call it the grass is usually greener. Whatever you approach, the result is the same: You emerge as swept away seeking out something better, more, or simply different. All this working, trying and lifting and doing can be a setup just weighing us further down.
And then before you recognize it, you find yourself at the verge of tears, fleeing your existence, huddled in a cold clump of leaves in the woods with no resolve or ounce of resilience to be found. And that is the morning I determined the woodpecker, the morning I fled my house in exhaustion. Tired of feeling like I can’t seize up.
Nowadays, I become uninterested in enduring the grind of wanting greater. So, I sought refuge inside the bluff in the back of my house. I shut the door and stepped away from family and the pressure, putting the goal to find a place to simply be still within the woods, hoping it might offer me a little peace.
And that is the morning wherein things shifted for me, where the woodpecker got here to me displaying me how to be in every facet of its beak. You, my persistent woodpecker friend, have come at merely the right time…
Tap, tap, faucet, the continual woodpecker is calling to me. I watch, and I concentrate. It’s showing me how it’s done. To maintain showing up in every second. Tap, tap, tap, just try again, every second-born anew.
What if I never get it proper, in no way pretty arrive, never works it out? But what if it’s pretty much showing up over and over, finding little treasures inside the moment and persevering with one? No beyond resentments, no destiny longings. Just a willingness to reveal up every day and try, and attempt, again and again, and again.
I watch and concentrate on the woodpecker. I watch and see that it doesn’t prevent and wallow in disappointment while it works so hard without reward. It moves on persistently trying as it has to because that’s what living is.
It felt just like the woodpecker came here to reveal me how to be. Reminding me that with every second, I feel amiss, that all I need to do is show up again to the following. That this grind is not permanent, that I can experience it, notice it, and come to the following moment clean and continue to try. I don’t need to undergo the grind; I can use my impact and company on this world and hold attempting to find the nourishment I need to thrive. Each moment is a new beginning, a brand new threat to form my global once more.
So, I took a breath and determined to do what I realize facilitates me be present and whole—I created. I walked for some time after which hopped off the path… and that’s while all the magic began and only for the report, this is always in which it occurs, at that moment when we hop off the regular direction and flow to the land of curiosity.
I determined something I was longing to find all summertime and fall—wasp paper. A bird had observed an old wasp nest and torn it apart. Tattered little bits of the former hive were strewn approximately. It felt like a gold mine. It was a chunk of magic in my hands.
So, I breathed. I tinkered. I made some installations with all the wonders around me. I attempted. I confirmed this little pocket inside the woods. I allowed my mind and stress to fall to the foreground, and I determined my breath.
I tried once more seeking out stillness. I allow going of the desire to brood, to wallow, to keep onto the fretting that occupied my morning. I found my breath, and I just tried to be in the woods with those treasures. I spent time with them, played with their arrangements and took some photos.
As I commenced to create with presence, I could sense a shift taking place inside me. I was giving shape to the world around me, and as I did, I could feel my internal panorama being shaped to. I felt relief. I felt my fog lifting. I began to feel calm; however, my gaze turned into already tempted to move to what changed into the coming next. The temptation to be anywhere but now is a steady lure.
Then I reminded myself that nowadays I showed up, in this second right here and now, I sincerely did it. I remind myself that it’s the act of showing up, no longer the most importantly final results. I release myself from destiny progress. Today I confirmed this pocket within the woods and made something. Tap, tap, tap because that’s what living is.