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PARKER: A crash course in self-improvement

Image Credit: Compilation/Jennifer Stahn
May 25, 2015 - 7:37 AM

The second my husband slammed on his brakes I knew I was a goner.

It was entirely my fault — I trust him to lead us through the streets on two wheels and never actually look for myself. If I had been paying attention instead of zoning out and testing my memory of Iggy Azalea lyrics, I would have seen the car approaching and anticipated his slow down.

As it stood, I was half-way through ‘Fancy’ and ran smack into the back of him, flying sideways into the cement. My legs are a sight for sore eyes — black, blue and yellow all over. Bloody and swollen. So not Fancy.

Getting out on my bike was a step towards this bigger project I have on the go surrounding bettering myself. You see, now that I’m all caught up on Game of Thrones and I’ve watched 50 Shades of Grey and I’ve completed at least 80 per cent of my spring cleaning, I have opened up the doors to doing more productive things like tuning into the Hay House Summit that is currently happening online.

If you don’t know what the Hay House Summit is, I encourage you to google it. It’s a free collection of audio interviews by the world’s leading influencers in metaphysical/spiritual/self-improvement/health. It’s a whole lot of woo woo, but if you listen to it during your day job, I promise you will leave feeling like you’re levitating.

I have come away with mantras, for crying out loud. Sprawled across my day planner are post-its that say things like “your joy is your job!” and “may my suffering be of service!”

Self-improvement — which is the trendy younger sister of self-help — has become all the rage. It has become standard practise to assume we are all ailed by something as opposed to thinking only some of us are plagued by problems. Self-improvement has empowered us to own our symptoms as opposed to owning the diseases they produce and it is an amazing transformation.

We complain about the hectic and toxic nature of our lifestyles, but we go home to meditate and listen to audio-books on the healing nature of oregano oil.

We may all be in different states of health disarray, but we’re ahead of where we were in the early 2000s when the self-help section of Chapters was where you least wanted to run into your ex-lover.

So I fell off my bike while internally singing Iggy Azalea lyrics and it hurt like a bitch.

“Are you OK?”

Yes, I said, obviously. One time I cut my finger practically clean off and said I was fine, because that’s how amazing adrenaline is.

One minute later — back on the bike — the nausea started to creep in. I was not fine. I was tired and bleeding and I wanted my bathtub and maybe my mom.

“You sure, babe?”

Fine, I said.

The lyrics of pop-centred hip hop were far from my mind at this point and all I could think of was anecdotes from this weeks audio interviews. Advice like, “let your body tell you what it needs,” and “let rest come to you in whatever form it needs to,” kept clouding my bleeding memory.

So I listened. I pouted and I listened and then I kept pedaling.

Because I was OK. Because my body hadn’t given up on me. Because I still had 10 km to cycle. Because crashing doesn’t mean you have to burn.

We are blessed to live in a time when people look for the truth behind their realities. We are — finally — starting to take responsibility for things like our sickness and our successes.

We fall and we get up again not because we’re told we should, but because we trust we can. And the fact that has become the popular train of thought these days is the best indication that maybe the hipsters were really on to something after all.

— Andria Parker is a 20-something blogger from Kamloops

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