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Beatles, Harry Potter, and the 7 pathways to rest

The sum is greater than its parts. You’ve heard this, right?

  • John and Paul without George and maybe even Ringo?—no Beatlemania.
  • One single sentence or paragraph does not a novel make.
  • Your career, body parts, or relationships, you are much more than that.

The same thing is true for rest. One tool is nice, but the 7 Pathways make an exponential difference.

Up to forever o’clock

My client Maia worked retail, which meant late evenings. Then she stayed up to forever o’clock before she made herself go to bed. Even then she had a hard time sleeping and felt really stuck when she woke in the middle of the night.

As we started working together, Maia picked up each tool quickly. But she couldn’t practice for more than a night or two before she was back to her old struggles with sleep.

But her nights and life started shifting for the better after a few sessions as she learned more pathways…. They started resonating together. I’ve seen this time and time again with clients. And it is true for me as well.

The cacophony of steroids

I had to re-harmonize myself during a short but intense dose of steroids last week.

Steroids are synthetic versions of the hormones your adrenal glands naturally put out when you’re stressed. (I’m not sure why they’re so healing in pill form, when stress in real life isn’t so healthy for your body!). While steroids are effective, they can also cause hyperness, mood swings, and sleeplessness.

I wasn’t surprised when I was awake with a vengeance an hour or two after bedtime. However, I was frustrated that my tried-and-true Restful Insomnia tools didn’t work immediately, since I’ve gotten so used to easily moving to rest.

Steroids put me totally out of the resting orbit. My angst-up mind, body, emotions felt like they wouldn’t let go.

While I knew I could rest — I’ve done it for over 15 years — it seemed out of reach. But I found a new perspective.

Global perspective: tour of the 7 pathways

I remembered that the pathways strengthen each other, so I went on a journey to touch into each one.

My mind slowed, breathing lengthened. I began circling back into seconds, then moments, minutes, and unscripted rest.

And I welcomed in the bonus of sleep.

Next time insomnia hangs around longer than you want

When you take a tour of the 7 pathways to rest, you shift your relationship to:

  1. Sleep and rest
  2. Environment
  3. Body
  4. Mind
  5. Emotions
  6. Bigger picture
  7. Alignment with your life

Start by simply checking in on your relationship with each of these (e.g., “Yes, I’m focused on rest and not chasing sleep.”).

Or use Restful Insomnia tools for each path. For example try this one, which helps you ground your body by noticing the physical reality around you:

What is your skin in contact with (air, sheets, PJs)?

What do you see? Soft light when your eyes are closed? Or with softly focused eyes, do you see lights and shadows?

Listen to sounds and silences that come and go.

Do you experience places of relaxation or tension in your body? Rest into the earth just 5% more….

Keep repeating this tour — however you choose to do it — and let it deepen you into your body, restoration for the next day, sleepiness, and into who you really are.

Global perspective: tour of the 7 pathways

As I remembered that the pathways strengthen each other, I went on a journey to touch into each one.

My mind slowed, breathing lengthened. I began circling back into seconds, then moments, minutes, and unscripted rest.

Welcoming in the bonus of sleep.

When the sum is greater than the parts…

You get In My Life by the Beatles, the Harry Potter series, and the warmth of self-compassion.

When you bring together the 7 pathways, you ride the continuum of rest ↝ sleep.

As the Beatles said in Blackbird:

Take these broken wings and learn to fly,
All your life
You were only waiting for this moment to arise.

one star
May you rest into who you really are,
Sondra

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