Wanda Wisdom: 2 Steps for Change
Part of aging wisely is creating a life we love more and more.
For me, this includes simplifying things.
Whether it's sorting my art supplies so I can easily access them, de-cluttering my closet, or having regular paperwork times to pay bills and keep my Quickbooks updated > it feels good to have some routine and a plan to move through life with less complications.
After feeling my own despair and malaise about ongoing events in the world and listening to many people feel despair and malaise about the world, I sat with Wanda Petunia for awhile for inspiration.
Wanda reminded me of a way to feel better. It was a path she took that was chronicled in her first book "Love catches Up with Wanda Petunia."
In the story, Wanda has been betrayed.
That is problem number one: something painful happens. You can substitute whatever bothers you here:
Then, she has a second problem: First, Wanda is sad and rootin' and snortin' mad. Second, she doesn't want to let the sun set on her anger.
Being the creative pig she is, Wanda quickly devises a plan to head West. She will outrace the sun! This is genius on her part - as it allows her to feel her feelings as long as she needs to. After all, there's nothing wrong with feelings! They inform us...
But she also has principles - she doesn't want to become bitter. She doesn't want to let the sun set on her anger. So heading West to outrace the sun is her best solution.
As I've been listening to worried people - who have a variety of struggles from losing a job to deciding whether to leave Twitter > Wanda reminded me of the two part solution to our struggles.
First, there is the practical homework to-do. When we are faced with something difficult, there is usually something practical we need to do.
Second, there are the emotional and spiritual homework to-do's. When we are faced with something difficult, there is usually deeper work related to current fears and feelings, past wounds and deeper struggles.
At the end of Wanda's first story, she meets someone (Beefy Parisian Pig) who helps her have an epiphany: She deserves to be treated well.
But this realization only comes after over 14,000 miles hoofing it from the East Coast to the West Coast to Japan to India to France.
She had to deal with a lot of practical things to make that trip.
But Wanda was also giving herself the emotional space to feel and be present with how she felt in the moment - no self-guilt or forcing herself to feel better faster.
When you get upset about something in the world - whether it's your personal world, or it's the bigger world > try this two-part process.
Get out your journal and pen/pencil. Draw a line vertical down the middle of a page. On the left, list practical things you can do about the situation. On the right, list how you are feeling and what is bothering you on a deeper level of your being and what can you do about that?
This process is called "empowerment." It's how to take difficult things and use your anger and frustration and hurts and fears to move out and up and over and through. The alternative is:
It's nice to avoid collapsing emotionally, physically or any way. But, when we don't see how to transform things > this is when we become more depressed and anxious and can implode.
With this simple plan >> Not only can you create positive change > YOU WILL!
Try Wanda's Wisdom and let me know what you experience!!
PS. If you are not in the Wanda Petunia Love Group on FB, please join! We discuss this and more there :)