It’s OK To Still Be Struggling

I had to remind myself this week that it’s OK to still be struggling. Many people are finding an adapted way of working and finding some sense of progression, or at least routine with their work. I noticed how watching this happening from the outside was having a very strong effect on me. There was sadness, frustration, anger, and confusion.

Watching things adapt out of lockdown seemed to shine a very focused beam of light on the fact that things are far from recovering with many of the things in my work life that are significant, and important to me. Not only this, but it seemed to dredge up what I thought were old, and passed emotions about exciting projects and work that were lost due to the situation, which are not possible to reschedule.

I struggled with these feelings saying to myself “you’ve been through this” “you’ve worked this out, why are you back here, feeling all this again.” As though emotions work this way…

I was fighting against allowing myself to feel as I did, because I persuaded myself that this ‘shouldn’t be affecting me like this anymore.’

I fought against this all week. Each day gradually feeling a little bit more lacking in energy, but striving to stay productive with new projects and practice. Until yesterday , where I finally accepted how I was feeling was OK to feel. I am still grieving work lost, lack of connection playing alongside others face to face, and still feeling fearful about when things may or may not return as I would like them to. This, alongside feeling excited about new things yet to come, but that doesn’t replace the struggle.

This week reminded me about the importance of the primary attitudes of being mindful, and that each one really does need constant practice.

Having a beginner’s mind’ to whatever new experience arises. ‘Patience’ to wait for things to resolve in their own time, ‘trust’ that they will, or at least find a new way.

‘Non-judgement’ to allow ourselves to see things as they are without layers of critique. ‘Non-striving’ that not all good things come from trying harder. ‘Acceptance’ not resignation to the way things are just now, even if we would like them to change. And, ‘letting be’ with curiosity being mindful of things as they are, without action, which allows things to be let go, and new things to emerge.

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  • Thanks for sharing your thoughts Lee, I can certainly relate to much of what you say here albeit from a different context.

    It’s so easy to allow thoughts and feelings to drift to places that might not support our wellbeing or relationships too well. I’m missing my travelling and my work too and can imagine that’s especially challenging for musicians and performers like yourself.

    Thanks again for sharing, somehow knowing that people like you sometimes struggle makes it feel a bit more ok when I’m noticing the struggles too.

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