Underwatering vs. Overwatering

So I’m going to be up front and let you know that this post has absolutely nothing to do with plants.
So if you thought you’d be sporting a green thumb after reading this, my bad!

This does have everything to do with { you } so reading on might still be in your best interests!

With Spring in full bloom, I’ve been seeing a lot of renewal. Heck, I’ve been feeling a lot of renewal - ya dig? Things are becoming greener, smelling fresher, and the sun is shining more often. It’s helped me to feel invigorated after what seemed like an unbearable winter this year. I don’t know that the winter was particularly long, or cold, or anything really, but it certainly felt like it took a lot of mojo out of me. And I don’t think I’m the only one to say that - speaking to clients, friends, family; a lot of people were feeling that this year. But as Spring brings new life and growth, I have to remember that we too can be overwatered and underwatered.

Here’s what I mean: a lot of us will associate ourselves with being underwatered. We’re overworked, underpaid, and spreading ourselves thin. I think that’s what I’ve been doing ever since I started this shift into yoga education, but I love what I do, so I keep at it despite. I know yoga instructors aren’t the only ones to feel this, I know not only people in the health and wellness industry feel this - we all do. (I feel like this always ends in a rant - bear with me, because I’ll be repeating myself a bit here, but I’m looking to say it again) We live in a society that gives merit to those who “grind,” those who day in and day out hit the pavement and never stop. Those who boast 4 hours of sleep, and 14 hour work days (I know, because I’m often one of them) I don’t do it as a brag, most of the time it’s a call for help, thoughts of “how can I keep at this?” running through my mind. But the reality is, a lot of us have to do that to make ends meet, to get ahead in life (ha, is that even a thing in the GTA?), to feel worthy.

Damn. That word worthy. Coming up time and again lately.

Here’s the thing. Just like a plant who is underwatered, underappreciated, underloved, we aren’t going to fair very well in the long run, and will end up looking, feeling, and being wilted and exhausted. I’ve tried to hit this home probably a million times between my teachings, my posts, and my everyday conversations. So I’ll leave it at that, don’t underwater yourself!

Now there’s another side to that coin: overwatering. This one’s a little trickier to think about, and though it’s a similar feeling to underwatering, I think they’re very different too. I was sitting at my parent’s house, and I noticed one poor little plant on it’s last legs. I knew my Mom was giving it water, sunlight, the whole thing, but I noticed that at the bottom of the jar (because it was hipster and planted in a mason jar, of course) here was a big ol’ pool of water that that poor plant just couldn’t suck up anymore. I’ve killed my fair share of plants in my day (hence this is not a post for you green thumbed angels out there) and it’s been from both over and underwatering - it’s really hard to get it just right sometimes. There are millions of plant species on this planet, each with a multitude of suggestions on how to keep it alive, and each with a variety of conditions that are vital to their survival - very much like humans, I would argue. Enter the idea of overwatering ourselves too.

I don’t know about you, but I am not the type of person to stick to one gig. I want to do it all. Not only do I want to be the hatha instructor, the kids and teen instructor, but I want to be the family instructor, and the pre/postnatal one too. I don’t want to just help schools in my area, I want to globally help students to find the tools they need to help them feel more at peace, more focused, free to be. That doesn’t only happen in my career though, I also want to be the caring friend, the loving partner, the providing dog-mom, the responsible daughter, the supportive sister, and that list just continues. But damn, we can’t do it all. And even if we could, we would never be “good” at any of them. I am an underwaterer - I push my body beyond it’s limits until taking a day to just “take it easy,” just isn’t enough; but I’m also an overwaterer - in that I strive to wear all of the hats at once because I LOVE all the feelings that associate with each of those roles, and that doesn’t always serve me or my students.

I’m a plant in need of water and nourishment, and a plant that just can’t suck any more up through the roots - you feel? Underwatering and overwatering are essentially the same thing - same, same, but different - we’re not listening to our needs, our environment, we’re not being good listeners of anything really.

So if you’ve chatted with me recently, you know that Joe and I are at a bit of a crossroads as to whether we should be staying up here in the ‘burbs, or moving closer to the city. Both have their pros and cons, both are valid options, and both are expensive AF so that doesn’t do much to sway us either way lol. That also puts me at a bit of a crossroads as to what that will mean for Calmunity as well. I know the inevitable expansion is coming, but what exactly will that look like, and how exactly will I pull that off? Just taking it day by day seems to be the best solution. I’m keeping the metaphorical water at bay by taking some time from some of my offerings to truly assess the best ways to move forward with them, and make sure I’m not “watering” just to underdeliver. I’m also giving water where it’s needed, and taking the time to practice more often, go to workshops to expand my business, and nourish my mind, body, and soul for when the decision eventually has to be made.

It’s like that popular meme says: You’re basically a houseplant with more complicated emotions. So be sure to water when you need it, pull back when you don’t, and grow into that beautiful being you’re meant to be.

much love,

Sara Mercer