It’s nearly Summer — time for a different rhythm of living. Late dinners in the setting sun. Vacations and house guests. Kids home from school for weeks on end. With my whole heart I beckon all that is warm and lovely in the world to come to us!
Well…all of my heart except for that one corner that feels slightly panicked.
It has come to my attention that many of us feel discombobulated at the shift that happens at the start of the Summer season. All that change and irregularity can really wreak havoc on your nice, regulated schedule.
You know what can help? Little Rituals.
Little Rituals are simple, repeated actions that happen in your every day. They ground you as you move through your day, and connect you to your most important values. This late spring and summer I’m asking some of my favorite folks to share their Little Rituals with us. Maybe you’ll see your own practice represented here? Maybe you’ll find just the thing to let your heart sink into the right now!
Today’s Little Ritual is brought to you by Alison Gresik, Flock member, fiction writer, traveller, and mom to two rambunctious kids. She also coaches writers and artists who are prone to depression and want to make their art a priority and is writing a book–Pilgrimage of Desire: An Explorer’s Intimate Journal of Art and Flow as a Way of Life– about one of her core values, Flow.
Hey Alison! What is your Little Ritual?
My Little Ritual is to talk to God and write down what she says back to me.
I was raised in a Charismatic church, so nobody batted an eye at divine messages and prophecies. In college, I grew weary of the one-way conversation in my prayers and journals, and I started to record the still small voice that responded to my pain and confusion. At first God spoke only in Scripture and quotations from Christian books. But soon enough the dialogue went off-book, and now I’m in the habit of inviting God to share truth and beauty with me whenever I get stuck.
What core value does this Little Ritual help you live out in your life?
This little ritual of writing down God’s words makes it possible for me to live in a state of Flow. Flow is a value that means so many things to me: letting go of the need for control, surrendering to the pleasure of creativity, following the path of least resistance. In the course of daily life, my mind and heart get clogged up with impatience, fear, and isolation. I try to force things to happen all by myself, and forget that I am part of something much larger.
God’s voice, immediate and personal, acts like a gush of meltwater to clear away the gunk inside. Not surprisingly, I often respond with a flood of tears when I hear what she says. Just this morning, as I waded through a sludge of doubt and panic, I heard:
“You are utterly safe. Nothing can harm you. Nothing can diminish you. You are an enormous powerful being! Your spirit is so strong.”
The words can seem cliched and banal when I go back to read them later. But in the moment they are alive and powerful, because they aren’t just words but a loving energy that carries me along to a new place.
Most often, I carry out this ritual on my computer, because I love how quickly and effortlessly the words flow through my fingers when I take dictation from God. But a pen and notebook have their charms too, and I carry a little Moleskine in my purse. In a pinch, I send up a silent cry in the ether and a response comes drifting down.
I’m still working on practicing my ritual when I’m not stuck but cruising along. I have this tendency to treat God as an emergency measure, instead of a companion who wants to share every moment with me, good and bad.
But I’m grateful for the times when the crud halts my progress, and I sit down at my laptop and type, “Amma, help! What can you tell me today?” She never fails to answer.
What about you Magpie? How do you listen to your still, small voice? What habit helps you connect to Flow? Do tell! We need your insight, because there ain’t nowhere to go but together.”
Did Alison’s Little Ritual inspire and companion you? Say “thanks, you!” here as she raises funds for her upcoming book, Pilgrimage of Desire: An Explorer’s Intimate Journal of Art and Flow as a Way of Life. I often share Alison’s posts on Curated Care Tuesdays, I like it that much! You can find more of her deeply nourishing work here.