More Than Just A Bike Ride

 
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Why not working IS working. 

These. Five. Words. 

The subject line of an email sitting at the top of my inbox. From author + coach + torch-holder, Liyana Silver.

The Universe working its magic again ~ hence this blog.

Because, not even thirty minutes prior to reading these words, on my way out the door to work, I felt the intense tingling of JOY and this {still somewhat foreign} feeling of complete peace. I laughed with hubs about how I am still working on reframing REST.

//

Today is Ride Your Bike to School Day. After the normal morning chaos and some serious eye-rolling drama from Bigs because this mom is NOT funny {hence, the missing child in the pic} - we rode our bikes down the mountain to the elementary school.

The whole way down, the girls giggled and chatted and excitedly announced animal encounters. 

After dropping them at school, I met Rob and littlest at the coffee shop. Unplugged. Just sitting + connecting. Sipping coffee and watching Reese show off her dance moves. Except this time - I wasn't making lists on my little yellow notepad.

Totally + completely present.

So simple. And so profound. 

Life changing really. This new way of living. 

I sat there - digesting the reality that this is my life

This is our life

My whole body relaxed. My mind still.

And. 

With the joy, comes vulnerability.

{Another feeling I'm still getting used to.}

I listened to Reese tell jokes and stories - and watched her play so freely.

And then, my mind wandered to the littles who are being stripped from their parents. And the pain of trauma. 

My heart ached. With gratitude and sadness. 

With vulnerability comes a window of opportunity for fear - and the inner critic to move into the driver's seat.

I could hear the whispers of a familiar voice. And it's bullshit stories. 

Rest is bad. Rest is lazy. Who do you think you are? 

Just because fear comes knocking - doesn't mean we have to hand over the keys.

Thankfully, I’m able to let those words float on through before the anxiety kicks in - and release the urge to engage or argue.

Rest is necessary. 

I know this to be true.  

I’ve seen this in my own life. 

And, inside her email -  Liyana validated,

“The physical act of writing (or whatever work you do) becomes hollow, meaningless and rote when we avoid the space of NOT working.” 

When I force myself to grind it out. To just.keep.going. To take no breaks. To fill every second of space with a to-do in the name of productivity + efficiency. 

Behind these actions is a powerful skill set - yes.

And.

Like anything - when the grinding + pushing + working becomes something we can’t NOT do - it takes away our power.

It becomes a liability. 

//

Rest + play are necessary. 

In the athletic arena. 

In entrepreneurship. 

In parenthood. 

In marriage. 

In life. 

To feel deep joy + inner peace. To recharge. To tap into creativity. To stay in the driver's seat of our life. 

We must give ourselves the permission - and time + space - to connect with our Source Energy. 

And to the magic within. 

~

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Samantha Arsenault Livingstone is an Olympic Gold Medalist, high-performance coach, transformational speaker and mother of four girls. She is the founder of Livingstone High Performance, LLC. and the online coaching course Rise Free Academy. 

Samantha helps women cultivate the habits, mindset and skill set needed to unapologetically step into their light - so they can achieve their own gold medal moments - AND - open the door for freedom, balance and joy that transcends.

Samantha candidly shares her battles with her inner critic, depression, perfection, PTSD and parenting as a working mother because she believes in the transformative power of story – and the strength that comes from knowing we are not alone. She is on a mission to pay forward all that she’s learned to help others find joy and live free.
  
A mama of heart warrior and mama of twins, Samantha and her husband, Rob, live in the Berkshires with their four girls. You can learn more about Samantha at www.samanthalivingstone.com.