I texted a friend as I was falling asleep last night to tell her that I was struggling with thoughts of fear and worry. I knew that if I named my feelings and what I was struggling with, that it would lessen the intensity of the fear and that I would be able to fall asleep.
I ended up sleeping quite well, and when I awoke this morning, I noticed I had received a reply from her. She encouraged me to “draw or write or get down in some way what your (ideal) habitat looks like. Let the metaphor flow so that when you have various images, you can think about what that represents for you.”
Isn’t my friend awesome?
This wise friend of mine introduced me a couple of years ago to the metaphor that our minds are habitats in which we grow our very lives. Now, before you start thinking we are new age hippies (or maybe we are? I don’t know. Who cares?), hear me out for a little bit. As my friend and I internalized this metaphor, we began to realize that if we chose to nourish our minds with positivity, there would be no way the weeds of negativity could thrive in our minds’ habitats.
If I care about how I feel and want to feel good—and VALUE a positive habitat, there will be no room for negativity to grow. It’s like all that positive sh** that I put into my brain just grows vines and branches and is lush and green and there is simply no room for weeds to grow.
I remember one time I was very upset about a circumstance, and I was bawling my eyes out to a friend. All of a sudden she said something funny. I can’t even remember what it was, but it may have centered around bodily functions, and I couldn’t help but laugh. Not only did I laugh, but I let out a loud guffaw that probably sounded like Fran Drescher. And suddenly I was laughing so hard that there was no way my brain could possibly simultaneously feel sadness.
Fear and sadness cannot survive when you are laughing.
According to Google, this is a definition of habitat:
the natural home or environment of an animal, plant, or other organism.
I have learned that I must keep the natural home of my mind uncluttered and free of negativity as much as possible. My homeostasis needs to be peaceful–not frantic. Following the sage advice that my friend gave me this morning, I was reminded that I want the habitat of my mind to look like this:
If I choose peace and am kind to myself, there is no way my mind can be cluttered in cobwebs. I just love this imagery above. I love it so much I want to marry it. (I said the same thing about roasted asparagus the other night.)
And I also may want to marry this spinach I made today. Omg! I love it! I feel like Popeye when I eat this spinach:
Eat this. Grow like Popeye! Nourish your body’s habitat.