What do you need?

There’s a question that, when I let it, guides me to the right places. Particularly on the days when you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, not feeling your best, a little unsettled; unsteady.

What do I need?

A few weeks ago I had a Sunday like that. No particular reason, but I felt unsettled. I was hungry but didn’t know what I wanted to eat; restless but with no idea what I wanted to do.

I sat with the unsettled feeling all morning, making sure I didn’t rush into doing as a way of ignoring the uncomfortable feeling…and then I asked myself what I needed.

The first answer was air, so I went outside. I sat on the deck for a while and asked myself the question again. I needed movement, so I moved to the grass and did some gentle yoga stretching. When that felt complete, the next thing I needed was peace, so I laid on the ground and watched the sky for a while.

A note on all of these things – there was a time when I would have stopped myself from doing yoga in the grass or laying and watching the sky because it felt “weird” or a neighbor might think something about me. It’s growth to be able to see yourself doing things that you wouldn’t have allowed in the past. It’s a gift we often overlook. 

After the air, after the movement, after the peace, the answer to what I needed then became doing something. Doing something ended up looking like going to the garden store for a butterfly bush and planting it in my front yard.

That evening I checked in to see how I was feeling. Not surprisingly it was very different than I’d felt that morning. I felt grounded, settled and connected back to myself.

The guiding question of “What do I need?” is powerful. It can also be difficult to answer when you’re used to ignoring your own needs, or muting them because of what others might think. I now have a butterfly bush in my front yard to remind me of the power of following that question. I invite you to try it out – get to know what you need.

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