It’s hard to be a striver.
Even a psychic told me I need to chill out.
This article is cross-posted from my weekly newsletter, The Sunday Soother, a newsletter about modern spirituality and useful tips for creating more meaning in your life that goes out every Sunday morning. To get more content about how to infuse your life with thoughtfulness, reflection, and meaning, subscribe here.
Last week when I was in Sedona I saw a psychic medium.
Those of you who are about to hit the unsubscribe button, please hold for a minute. This newsletter edition isn’t about the psychic medium (though, okay, it’s a little bit about the psychic medium).
She told me a number of creepily accurate things, and a fair number of things where I cocked my head and was like, “Come again?” Either way, it was a delightful experience, and when in Sedona…
One thing though that really landed with me was when she told me I have psychic abilities and my “channel is good for that.” Literally this is the fifth time in six months a random person has told me I’m psychic.
Wow! I thought. I am so cool! I am definitely a psychic! Can’t wait to psychic everybody I know! I am so special and unique!
(I have never once had any experience or thought that anybody could ever claim was psychic, but no matter.)
But being the classic teacher’s pet/valedictorian/perfectionist/Type A person that I am, who also happens to have a healthy interest in the woo-woo, I internally pumped my first and cheered myself on.
“I AM GOING TO BE THE BEST PSYCHIC EVER!” I thought. “I’M GONNA COMMUNE SO HARD WITH SPIRITS THEY WON’T KNOW WHAT’S HITTING THEM!”
(PS: I swear to god the rest of this newsletter is not about being psychic. I save that stuff for the Sunday Woo-ther. Lol, that newsletter doesn’t exist but hmm maybe it should…)
“But…” the medium said.
I froze. There is no but. I am going to be a psychic medium par excellence. I will see so far into the other side that my psychic nickname will be Binoculars Catherine. It doesn’t matter that I’ve literally never once experienced a psychic message or sight of any sort. THERE IS NO BUT!
“But…” said the medium. “You have the channel, but ‘they’ say you are trying too hard. It’s like — I have this image of you trying to grab a football out of midair, when you should just be waiting in the right spot to receive it. And you’re going to have to get uncomfortable with not understanding the images or words you get. Just let it be. They say your mind has gotten you this far in life but it’s time to move into your heart and body, and to trust.”
I deflated like an extremely non-psychic balloon.
The thing is — whoever “they” are, they’re right. I know all this. At an intellectual level I know my next work in life is simply… being. To move into my body and heart. To not try so goddamn hard.
But how do you stop trying when you’ve been a striver your entire dang life? When you’ve always been given a goal to move towards or a wall to scale?
Literally, the physics of it is not comprehensible to me. I don’t understand what non-forward motion in life looks like. I feel like the actual way of being I want and need to move into is just not on a path. Like, there is no path. And if there is a path, it exists on a completely different planet that I don’t even realize is there. And I’m trying so hard to suss out a way to get there, because that’s just, on a cellular level, not how I’ve been my whole life.
I know I can’t strive my way into it, but I’m not sure what else to do when you’ve been a striver your whole life, how do you move into a… be-er? A receiver? A stand-er-still-er?
I don’t have the answer. And I guess that’s the point.
But for now, I’ll just take long walks in nature, let my mind float where it may, meditate even when I end up falling asleep on my couch, laugh with my friends and family. And just be. As much as I can.
(I will be taking appointments for psychic readings in 2020. Stay tuned.)