When All You Want to do is Stay in Your Pajamas & Eat Cookies
If it were up to me, I’d spend ninety percent of my life in my bathrobe. I’d hardly leave my bed, with the exception of going to the kitchen to find snacks, or using the bathroom. You see, I take great pleasure in creature comforts, and I love the coziness of home life, as well as the peace that comes with solitude. And yet, I don’t think my highest Self, the one with a capital S, wants me to stay in and eat cookies all day, every day. While it’s nice to recharge and relax, it’s also true that life isn’t meant to be experienced solely in our pajamas, wrapped in a fuzzy blanket. It takes a certain amount of effort to venture outside and be willing to face whatever the Universe has lined up for that day.
There’s a larger issue here than choices in apparel or if you were born a homebody. It’s not about being an introvert or an extrovert, or if your social calendar leaves much to be desired.. What it really comes down to is your willingness to engage with life. It can be all too easy to resist life, meaning, we don’t want to exert effort, step out of our comfort zones, or leave what feels safe. It takes EFFORT to wake up, get dressed, and interact with people. It takes a willingness to engage with others and to fully accept whatever situation the Universe places in front of you: be it meeting your boyfriend’s parents for the first time, seeing your annoying neighbor at a party, or waking up early to get your kids to baseball practice. It’s so much easier to stay home, wear flannel, and eat cookies. Don’t get me wrong, there are times when you need to recharge and rest, particularly if you’re feeling drained (read my article on PMS fatigue HERE), but there is also a time to engage with life at the exact moment that you want to resist it.
It takes energy to get on the train and go to that party. It takes energy to go on that first date, even though you know it’s going to feel awkward and weird. It takes energy to invite people over for dinner when you barely have enough kitchen space to make your lunch and your dining room is a foldout table near the entryway.
All that being said, sometimes the only way forward is through. Sometimes, you have to be willing to go even when you’re tired. You have to be willing to say yes, even when it’s raining out, and you know you’ll never get parking. Sometimes, you have to put on a nice outfit, brush your teeth, and show up for life, because that’s why we’re here: to build connections, foster To fully engage with life, we have to be willing to take off our pajamas and get out of the house. It’s as simple as that, and yet, there are days when it feels like even that is too much. There are days when watching Netflix while eating bowls of mashed potatoes is all the activity you handle. That’s okay, too. Still, you want to make sure that you’re showing up for your life. You want to make sure that you’re not distancing yourself from others because of an unconscious belief that you’re not worthy of love, or that it’s not safe to join. So often, life offers us opportunities to connect with others and experience joy, but it’s easier to push it away, because we don’t have the willingness to engage. On some level, we’d prefer to feel alone (and cozy), because it feels safe, and it doesn’t stretch us.
Here’s the key: The spiritual work is in the stretching, and so that means you’ve got to take off your onesie and say yes to life.
The general rule of thumb when thinking about decisions is to say yes when you most want to say no and to say no when you fearfully believe that you have to say yes to please others. Stretching means going against what feels safe and familiar, going out and putting on a smile before you’re happy, agreeing to go to lunch with that new person at work, even if it feels uncomfortable, or organizing game night when you’d be okay to spend that night baking cookies and snuggling with your cat. The greatest joy comes when you are willing to do what you don’t want to do, but you know will help you to create a life filled with connection, loving relationships, and experiences that will require you to step into the person you are becoming - your Highest Self - the you who extends and receive love with ease and grace.