I have lived much of my life as if I am being measured by an invisible yardstick.
Or as if someone is looking over my shoulder assessing my days with a hefty grade book in hand.
I am prone to trip over hidden measuring tools or feel these invisible judges crowding my personal space.
Sometimes the critic looks like me.
January seemed long and February will evaporate before I fully settle into the month, I wonder how many checkboxes have already remained unchecked?
If I am honest, it is not only during the first of the year when I feel the weighted stare of my silent hovering critic.
I sense its presence whenever I have skipped a day or many days of a new yoga program, reading plan or any other task beckoning to be checked off. Studies confirm the tiny high received from making checkmarks. I love it when my to-do list is covered with the ink of completion. There’s nothing wrong to feel a sense of accomplishment when finishing a task or goal. Yet I haven’t been able to shake the belief someone is keeping score. The tallies are designed for me as well as those persistently pulsating empty boxes.
What if I could look at the checkmarks and empty boxes as not successes and failures but as evidence of a full life?
What if I didn’t equate an empty checkbox as a lack of discipline or motivation but as the result of different choices or a change in priorities within a given day?
My days can no longer be measured by subtracting unfilled boxes from checked ones.
Or submitting to an imagined taskmaster by stacking today’s unmet expectations and adding it to tomorrow.
What if I could look at the hollow between the box’s four lines and view it not as a prison of judgment but as a swollen square of grace?
More than a week of February has passed and I might only be a few days into a yoga practice started on the 1st, there is no finger-shaking allowed from a bossy judge or myself.
I won’t combine missed sessions into one super-sized one to be proven acceptable and caught up. I will simply begin again because if perfection is the only way, I might never unroll my mat.
How can you make peace with the inevitable empty checkboxes this week?