Tuesday, September 1, 2020

August has been the moving month. We’ve been in our new place for two weeks now and I’m ready for life to slow down again. I leafed through my calendar a few days ago and oh, man, August has been a busy and turbulent one. There was so much to do and organize before the move – not necessarily related to the move, but appointments we couldn’t postpone, like Everett’s vet check-ups, other life admin deadlines etc.
When I get extremely busy, I’m sometimes self aware enough to stop and ask myself if what I’m doing and stressing about is actually necessary. A lot of the times, my frantic answer is “YES ABSOLUTELY!” and I keep on hustling — but sometimes, sometimes … I manage to slow down enough to realize that I only think I have to do A, B, and C, because I hold myself to an extremely high standard, and that it actually doesn’t really change a thing, if I do aforementioned stuff some other time or not at all.

But despite the stress, the move went well, we’re here now and getting acclimated. I got the impression that it took Everett around 48 hours to properly arrive at the new place, and I’m not even sure if he still remembers the old one. We were worried about how the move might affect him after having been with us for only a little over a month, but he’s doing very well and enjoying the garden at our apartment building. He also got his first hair cut last week and looks so grown up, now that you can actually make out his features without the fluff and wool. I feel like I’m writing a family update e-mail to a bunch of family and friends of whom 80% are probably rolling their eyes at yet another update on “Everett’s hair growth, reading progress and poop consistency”. And the other 20% have already dozed off. Sorry.

Because we moved to another part of Berlin, not just another part of Kreuzberg, it somehow feels like we’ve actually moved to a completely different city. This makes me miss our old place and area much less, because it feels so, so far away. I don’t really miss the place itself though, there’s just this feeling of familiarity and, again, nostalgia, that comes up when I picture the place and me, us, there. It’s just an apartment, just a street, but it’s not the actual place you miss, it’s the person you have become and been there … right? And the feeling of being at home. That’s at least what I’m thinking.
Now that I’m here, at the new apartment, there’s this huge blank space and the question of who I am going to be and become here. What things are going to happen here, that are going to be memories someday … what is it that we are going to be looking back on in a few years time?

In a weird way so much has happened in August and also nothing really has happened in August. We had to deal with, organize and stress about so much we usually never think about, because we just consider it a given. ~ like having wifi for example ~ 🤡
Now that we’re here and everything’s done and dealt with (apart from the curtain situation that we still have to figure out and the not having chairs or a table situation…), I can finally go back to the actual things I need to and want to be doing. Like work and general life stuff.
Trying to train our dog for instance. (I say “trying” because it proves to be very challenging. 😂 ) Writing and reading more, getting back into work projects, taking online classes again (which I did in the beginning of lockdown) and working on new things that I had to pause for the last two months.
I say this every year and I will say it again: As soon as the middle or end of August rolls around and September appears on the horizon, I feel this sense of renewal and motivation, because it used to be the time when a new school year started. I was always excited to go back to school and begin again.
Now that everything around me feels (and is) new and still unfamiliar, I want to roll up my sleeves, think up new ideas and tackle new projects.

I’m also trying to reconsider certain habits and routines. As soon as all of my surroundings had changed, it became easier to question anything else that I’d considered a given. Everything being up in the air and somehow negotiable, wasn’t only positive, I have to add. Weirdly enough, I found it kind of difficult to keep up my daily Yoga practice since we moved to our new apartment. I have a lovely space to roll out my mat, I have all my props, my candles, everything I could possibly need … but I still found it difficult to just land on my mat and fully dive into my practice. Maybe because I’m not feeling quite at home yet? Which makes it harder to let go?
But I’m trying to see the change of scene, this reset, as a chance, is what I’m trying to say. I can get very rigid when it comes to following daily routines for example — so far so that they feel more like rituals, or something I think I have to do instead of something I really want to do.

A tool that’s really helpful in that process is the “Goodbye/Hello”-Journal by Vicki and Selina I started working with in the end of last year. [I also mentioned it in a blogpost in the beginning of this year where I talked about trying to do less.]
Apart from really insightful journal prompts, that are helping me to realize what really brings me joy and what I actually want to be focusing on, it also asks you to commit to three goals (these could be small things as well!) in every quarter of the year. Three things. That’s doable. Setting goals can sometimes turn into this list writing exercise, where you end up with so many things that only thinking about tackling one of them feels overwhelming.
And at the end of each quarter, you dive into a review of the past three months and find out what you were able to do, what you maybe decided not to do after all and why and so on. To make a long story short: The journal and this method have helped me to stay focused since the beginning of January. And they are still helping me to use this current feeling of a new beginning, and this motivation, to find out what things I want to put my energy towards in the next months, and until the end of the year.

I jumped around a lot in this one, I think …, which mirrors my state of mind pretty well at the moment. August has been wild and as I said in the beginning, I’m ready for things to slow down again. I’m ready to slow down, and listen, and consider this reset, and this new, blank space that has opened itself up, as a chance and opportunity.

I hope you’re well. I hope you had a good August. I hope you are finding things you want to focus on in the upcoming month, things that bring you joy.
Thanks for reading this and until next time!

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