For years, I sat too much. I knew that sitting was bad for me - all of me: my hips, my back, my psyche, my spirit; and, of course, my mood.
I created not one, not two, but three companies that kept me glued to my seat and staring at my laptop. Pretty much all day, everyday. And, the worst part is...I was trying to inspire people to walk more, dance more, to do whatever got them out of their chair. I was busy motivating others to get up and out of their chair while I was firmly planted in mine. That irony didn’t sit well with me.
I wasn’t proud of myself or my decisions. And yet, I still did it.
Finally, I stopped. I got up and out of my chair and started putting my own advice into action. I became my own best client.
In November 2016, right after the election, I stopped merely saying I was ready for change. Instead, I opened my mind and my heart for change to happen. It was time to leave Washington, DC and actually experience physical, emotional and spiritual movement.
Movement and change quickly followed. My boyfriend and I rented out our home in DC to good friends and owners of DCVegan and went to live in new places. Yes, places. We didn’t pick one new location and find one new home. Instead, we choose a new lifestyle, one full of freedom, movement, experience, spirituality, and community.
I gave up the sitting way of life and embraced a moving, evolving way of life as a creative being, untethered to traditional routines, hierarchies and chairs.
That all sounds lovely right? But how do I actually spend my time?
I hike, dance, or do yoga every few days. I am learning to relax into what feels right in the moment. I try to be helpful. I try to make the most loving choice possible. I make time to connect with old and new friends who also are choosing a loving path.
For a while we were living in Asheville, NC, and absolutely loving the vibe there. We happily jumped headfirst into their thriving Contact Improv and Dance community. We explored the Blue Ridge Parkway, hiked the Smoky Mountains, met the locals, and appreciated the community minded intentionality - evident in the “shop local” stickers in the windows, local breweries, intentional communities, and neighborhood farms. A few of my favorite moments were visiting the Mountain Light Sanctuary, EarthHaven, and re-connecting with friends I know from the East Coast Jam.
Currently, we’re living next door to our close friends in a converted church in a small village in southern Vermont. That's our current home - with the double rainbow over it - a lucky picture perfect moment! We garden, cook and eat together, we play music and sing together. We talk about what’s inspiring us, and what’s the most loving and caring thing to do for each other and the greater community around us.
Last weekend, we all went to UNIFIER, a Transformational Healing & Expressive Arts Festival. We camped in the woods, dodged the Poison Ivy, danced in the fields, drummed in a circle, attended workshops, rituals and ceremonies, and created more beautiful memories with old friends. There was a real community-building and spiritual message to the festival, all expressed artistically and with deep respect for the land. It inspires me to be more intentional about all those elements myself.
Speaking of the land, we have a new friend who runs a farm on his land. This friend is a lifestyle teacher of sorts. Not the “wear this brand, and read this blog” type of lifestyle, but by modeling the self-motivation of daily breathing exercises, growing his own food and medicine, building his own home, and even living off the grid. We’ve helped him out a few times - digging up weeds, preparing garden beds with compost, and planting tomatoes, peas, and beans. It’s hard work, for sure, and I’m incredibly grateful for what I learn along the way. He inspires me to be more intentional about my lifestyle choices.
Now that I’m embracing a moving/evolving way of life, I’m finally doing so many of the things I used to dream about while I was sitting uncomfortably in my chair. Now, I have less stress and fear, and more acceptance and trust. Not only do I feel better physically, but I’ve opened my heart to feel more connection and love. Connection and love toward myself, my clients, my friends, my parents, my life teachers, and even strangers.
I am more grateful than ever before. Grateful for both the humility and the confidence that’s growing inside of me. Grateful for the foundation of my previous experiences and the beauty of new experiences. Grateful for the people who have shown me both the hardship and the beauty of life, you inspire me to serve. Grateful for the fast pace of the city and the slow ease of nature, you both teach me. Hear me say, thank you.
I feel vulnerable sharing my story. And, it feels right. I’m curious about how sharing my story will impact others in new ways. I wonder about your moving and evolving life. I’d love to hear from you. Drop me a line sometime at firstname.lastname@example.org.