L E T T E R from Emily – What “Should” I Do? – The Broad Place

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L E T T E R from Emily – What “Should” I Do?

I’m writing this letter for anyone who has ever found themselves caught in the perfectionist loop, the spiral of Instagram comparisons and the slope of procrastination. We call our devices “smart” but something that is truly smart should be used to propel us further and more fully into our own worth and expand our consciousness so that we can live life to its fullest. We live in a wonderful time of access to information, there was a time I felt repulsed by how much technology rules our modern lives, now I’ve come to a harmonious understanding with it being a natural part of human evolution and something that is smart as the user.

But this needs to be constantly kept in check for me. For example, I am a big believer in the power of routine, ritual, devotion and discipline, but I was unconsciously caught in a social media black hole of what all of those things “should” look like. My rituals “should” include a burning stick of Palo Santo, my routine “should” involve extreme yoga poses, devotion means I “should” live a barebones monastic life and discipline meant I “should” enforce strict rules on myself out of fear of failure and not looking at evolved whichever post I just saw. The very obvious truth dawned on me suddenly, that if a ritual is something that you dedicate focused awareness to, and repeat for the purpose of devotion, then my ritual was actually scrolling Instagram looking at other peoples practices and it was becoming routine for me to be left feeling overwhelmed and inadequate.

I’m now in the practice of letting go of all of my ideas of what these things “should” look like or feel like or what my experience “should” be with them and instead just letting them be. The irony being that when I started to do this, I realised that I actually love the power of a burning stick of Palo Santo, and I feel uplifted after yoga, and quite like the simplicity of a relatively barebones life (I guess there really is value in these ancient practices). But that will change, shift and morph as I do. Now, my Instagram is culled to include only those who I truly feel inspired by, when I scroll I see posts that give me ideas, I’m inspired by how others are practising and I put down my phone knowing that I can take or leave any of what I just saw.

With love,

Emily x

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