Today has been, so far, maybe the best day of this year.
Maybe I’m overcompensating because I was so recently broken up with and, of course, I had plenty of great times with him this year before that happened. But I have always felt that the happiness experienced in solitude has a magic to it that can’t be shared with someone else. It feels like a happiness born of your own soul.
I woke up today around 8am and played a mindfulness track about problem solving as I got ready. The track encouraged deep relaxation while prompting you to imagine a situation that might be a bit difficult. I imagined working with a pharmacist I don’t really like and at the same time allowed the feelings of calm and strength to build me up with every breath. I’m working with this pharmacist tomorrow so now I feel more confident about it.
Then I took a bus to the south side of town for a counselling appointment. I’ve now been offered regular appointments with one of the agencies I was on the waiting list for. It’s actually the agency that would’ve been my second choice and I’ve also been matched with a male counsellor which I was apprehensive about, but so far I’ve been enjoying it. He listens really well, asks thought-provoking questions and today he actually brought up neuroplasticity which I’m really interested in! I got to delve into things I’ve been wanting to talk about for a while, which was a nice initial release.
The weather in Edinburgh today is beautiful. Blistering sunshine. After my appointment, I got a vegan sausage roll(!) then went to sit in a park called The Meadows to bask in the sunshine. I took off my jacket to sit on the grass with and decided to meditate for a while. No guided track, no timer, just me and the sun on my face. And soft chatter from people around me. And birdsong. I hadn’t meditated completely on my own for a while so I used a method of counting 20 breaths at a time.
About halfway through I got two compulsions. One to dig out my phone to look at and one to take a drink of water. I decided in that moment to spend 20 breaths meditating on each of those compulsions. “Why do I want to look at my phone?” I asked myself internally. Almost immediately came the answer: “Because my ego is drowning”. That satisfied me and I continued focusing on my breathing.
The urge to drink water reminded me of the book Siddhartha and the time the protagonist spends living as a samana, and I concluded that, in that moment, that was just another compulsion to overcome. Then I got a sore hip. Which I decided to acknowledge as a physical manifestation of resistance to the present activity. The more I meditated on that concept, the less sore it became. But I did feel stiff and sore when I finally uncrossed my legs! Before I got up, I gave myself a hug. Highly recommend that to anyone!
After my meditation, I went to the library to pick up a new book then walked into the centre of town to buy a few things. I got some new jeans for work because mine are wrecked. I really wanted to buy myself a new top or something like that but I resisted the urge. Then I went to a chemist to buy a couple of skincare products. My skin lately has been very oily and acne-prone so I wanted to get something for that. I saw a 3-piece skincare kit (cleanser, toner and moisturiser) that I’ve actually used before for £27. But I didn’t really need all that, I already have all of those items. I initially let myself be silently drawn by my desire to buy things I don’t need. I stood in the queue with it. Then I sighed and went to put it back.
It doesn’t sound like a big deal but that was a big moment for me. My self-control in situations like that is typically not very good. The fact that I listened to my intuition to put it back and didn’t let that anxious and compulsive side of me win is something I’m so proud of! It turns out there was a separate deal on more inexpensive skincare (3 for 2) and I decided to take advantage of that instead. I ended up with 3 products that I did actually feel like I needed for £12. At one point, I caught sight of myself in a mirror and realised I looked a lot nicer than I thought: “You look lovely and you’re doing so well, I’m so proud of you!” I said to myself internally.
I walked out of there without that feeling of guilty indulgence glossed over with euphoria that I would’ve had if I’d given in and spent more money. Instead I felt more relaxed and content.
And now I’m at my favourite café blogging! It’s just gone 3pm and I can feel a slight anxiety about the idea of the day closing in and the sun going down. I think I have a negative association with the sun going down, as if at that point it is inevitable that my mood will dip. I have this complex about “wasting the day”, even though today, for example, I’ve spent my time really well! I think if I plan something nice to do tonight, like doing my nails or cooking a nice recipe, then I’ll feel less anxious about how I’ll feel when I get home. I also have some music that I feel like I need to be working on. I might devote a half hour to that at least so that I can enjoy the rest of my night in peace.
Today’s blog post has been pretty casual and unstructured but I think it was important for me to document this lovely day and remind myself that I still have a huge capacity for happiness and wellbeing, even all by myself. 🙂
Thanks for reading! What’s your favourite way to spend time with yourself? Let me know in the comments! Hope you’re having a lovely day.
– SMUT. ❤ xxxx