Dancing outside my comfort zone

Shaking up the Status Quo

When Things Are No Longer Working

As much as I try to stay positive, there are days when my mood is communing with the serpents. Days when all I want to do is pet my cats. The cats don’t mind. In fact, they rather enjoy it. They know that if they get tired of my strokes and skritches, they can just get up and move to another part of the house for awhile. I can’t offend them or hurt their feelings nor they, mine. And it is good.

Humans are a completely different story. My words, when flowing unchecked can cause all sorts of mayhem. I can offend, annoy or anger with just a few words, an unkind tone, a gesture. Humans don’t try to take a step back and wonder why I’m behaving so poorly. They don’t try to see that I might be having a rough time or feeling pain. It’s neither their job nor their responsibility to see past the words, the tone and the gestures. They simply respond to what they see and hear.

Understanding the harm I can do, albeit after the fact convinces me that my hermit nature needs to be exercised sooner rather than later. I am responsible for the harm I do others so I am responsible for recognizing when pain, stress, worry, or grief have impacted my normal, if hard won, joyful nature. It is up to me to realize when I’m not fit for social interaction and absent myself from the community of humans until I can again behave in a fashion which does no harm.

Especially disturbing is how quickly a few setbacks can erase the work of years; often in the space of an instant.

Change Can Actually be a Relief

What makes less sense to me right now is, having taken that step back and even given up my dance nights for the time being, I feel no sense of loss. Sure, I miss seeing my friends but I am actually relieved that I don’t have to leave the house at a certain time on the same days every week. Hard as it might be to believe, even something I find pleasurable has become something of a rut.

Suddenly, I don’t feel like I have to go out on certain nights and if I do, I don’t have to follow a specific schedule or go to the same old place. Instead, I can stay home, put together a healthy batch of whatever, do some writing or editing and even go to bed early; or early for me, anyway. It’s an odd feeling of freedom from obligations I set for myself.

Is it possible to get stuck in a routine that’s supposed to be fun until your very mood, your personality is affected? I suspect that it’s less common with people who are naturally social and those who work a regular job where social activities, even if pre-planned over a long period of time are a nice way to break up the week. But in a free-flowing lifestyle, rigid adherence to a regular routine becomes almost painful, no matter how much pleasure is derived from the activity. I speak, of course, as one who takes in inordinate amount of pleasure from being alone.

Turning an Anomaly into a Research Project

As I have a curious mind, it does make me wonder if this finding of displeasure in pleasure is an anomaly found only in beings like myself who thrive on aloneness or if it’s something which can affect anyone. Is it attributable to people with very limited social lives who get their social interaction according to a very strict schedule? Will altering the schedule and throwing in some unexpected social choices alleviate loss of pleasure? Or does it call for something more drastic?

This is becoming something of a one woman social experiment. Phase 1 involves giving up my regular social schedule. I’m not sure yet whether Phase 2 will take the form of different activities engaged in on my regular social nights or if both activities and schedule will be altered. For now, I’m just happy to have accomplished something with my writing. But that, too meant going in a different direction. For now, I’ve put Hannah’s Chair aside and gone back to the latest revision of Sasha’s Journey. While I only managed a chapter today, it’s a chapter more than I’ve managed on anything in over a week. My initial conclusion, then, is that changing things up is a good thing. But my pool of data is quite small and doesn’t warrant reaching any far-flung conclusions.

May my sanity hold out and my inspiration rise to the occasion!

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful for change.
2. I am grateful for the opportunity to experiment with my life.
3. I am grateful for the companionship of my furry children.
4. I am grateful for improvement in my physical world.
5. I am grateful for abundance: opportunities, inspiration, motivation, change, lessons, challenges, peace, health, hope, harmony, philanthropy and prosperity.

Blessed Be

I invite you to visit my Facebook pages, Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author and HLWT Accounting. Please also drop by my website, www.shericonaway.com and check out my Hire Me Page. I’ve created these pages as a means of positive affirmation and would be very grateful if you’d “like” them or leave a comment! Thank you!

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