I’m only as good as the last book I’ve read.
This is a saying thrown around a lot in my family.
We’re readers. So after any book we’ve read we have a lot of ideas to share and advice to give. They say that the best learning is done when you teach, so we take what we’ve read and put it into action. Hence, I’m only as good as the last book I’ve read.
You could take this further and say that I’m only as good as the last tool I’ve acquired.
The tools we have at our disposal dictate the what we’ll create.
This is ever present in my work as an artist. We start with those little kid art sets that come in a case with markers, pencils, cheap oil pastels and a ruler. Then we realize what mediums we like and we upgrade to a little bit better quality of tools. As time goes on and we wear out those tools we decide it’s time to invest in tools that will give us exactly what we need, and we purchase the professional quality materials. With each step, our art changes. We go from refrigerator quality to collectors pieces that will last generations. As we grow up, as we grow wise, our toolbox grows too.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately as I continue with my own healing. I think of the tools I’ve collected just in the last 3 years. The professionals I’ve turned to (therapist, health coach, acupuncturist), and the methods I’ve been using to slow down (breathwork, meditation, yoga). Sometimes I’ll be talking to my acupuncturist about a day that I felt overwhelmed or angry and she’ll ask if I was using one of the tools she taught me (lower Dantian breathing) I’ll think, “Oh, I forgot about that one.”
The tools in our toolbox are only good to us if we use them.
So I read the books I’ve collected or have been recommended to me. I take notes, I underline, I make it easy to reference back for when I forget. Because I will forget. I leave sticky notes at my desk to remind me of the tools I have for when I feel anxious or afraid. To do my Dantian breathing, to notice where in my body I’m feeling emotions, to get up and do a sun salutation, to go for a walk. I journal, I paint (for fun), I bake, I create as a tool to get back back to myself. The wise woman inside of me that knows creation is life.
We are all only as good as the tools that we have. More often then not we have all the tools we need, we’ve just forgotten about them. Which is why we seek out coaches, therapists and healers–To help us stay on track, to remind us of the tools we’ve forgotten or lost.
I don’t know where you are in your journey, but I know that guides will be needed along the way. Spending time now, before you get lost, to pull your resources together will help for the days when you forget that you do have tools you can use. They might be as simple as remembering to breathe. Whatever they are, pull them together and put them somewhere you can find them later. Make it easy on yourself to realign and get back on course.
Want more tools in your self-care toolbox?
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