A few weeks after I found out I was pregnant, I felt my energy levels drop. It actually makes sense since my whole body was busy making room and creating a new being inside. Since my energy was so low, it was hard to get myself to do things, to create things. Needless to say I stopped doing a lot of things, such as writing in my blog, painting, running, among other activities. At first I felt guilty and would try to convince myself that come next day I would have more energy and I would get back on track. The following day, I would feel drained by the time I was back from the lab, so I would honor how I felt, I fed myself and rested, then the guilt trip would start and once again I would promise myself that tomorrow I would do more.
Two months went by and I was super behind on my own projects, but I realized that I didn’t need to do those things, I didn’t need to be more productive, I was doing enough. I was actually doing great since I was honoring my body and its need to take things slow and be low key. My body really needed all that extra energy to create a little being and regenerate itself.
As time goes by and I become older, I have noticed that we live in a society that highly values productivity. The busier and more productive you are, the more valuable.
If you are not busy making, doing, producing there is something wrong with you.
Sometimes it seems that it doesn’t even matter if that which you are producing is of quality. In part my guilt of not doing more came from these ideas that we as a society carry around and perpetuate. These ideas harm us when we go to dormant periods or dry spells, moments in our lives when we feel like not doing more or we feel blocked.
Lately my best teacher has been nature and by observing I noticed that most if not all living beings go through a dormant stage, a stage of suspended animation if you will. A moment in time, this could be hours, weeks, months and even years; where they do almost nothing, and even some actually do nothing. A good example are some trees which go through a dormant period during winter another good example are insects which go through a diapause if the environment conditions are not favorable to live.
So, I realized that we don’t always have to be doing, producing, writing, sharing, running and so on, it is ok to pause, it is ok to take sometime and be dormant. Thus, I gave myself full permission to stop doing a lot of the things I wanted to do but had no energy for them, specially because I knew that if I forced myself to do them the results wouldn’t have been the same. So for as long as I was pregnant and the first 3 months of postpartum I kept my list of tasks to the essentials (sleep, eat, work, walk).
It is now, in prelude to spring that I am feeling a lot more energy and feeling like I can and want to do more, like sharing and writing.
The most important lesson of this article is that it is natural to have cycles of productivity, everything in nature has a dormant stage, even some flower plants only bloom once a year!!
Have you been overdoing things!? Do you feel your value is tight to how much you produce!? Do you thing is ok to pause and take sometime!?
Remember to allow yourself to feel the rhythms of your body, mind, and spirit. Don’t forget to honor them.