When You Hit a Wall

2020 has been infamous for testing us. How much can we handle as individual people? As a population? How much bandwidth do we have? How much can we take before we hit a wall? What is our capacity for handling or dealing with difficult things?

And… What do we do when we hit a wall?

They say marathon runners hit a wall and that is the point they want to give up.

But that is the exact point when they need to keep going in order to finish the race. 

We need to listen to ourselves, to our bodies, our feelings, and do what we need to do in order to best take care of ourselves. So, being mindful that you are listening to yourself, if you hit a wall, I want to encourage you to keep going. How do you make the wall work for you? How do you find a way around the wall? How do you move through the wall?

This pandemic has been hard in so many ways, for all of us. So, what do we do when we hit a wall? Keep going. And right now, I want to encourage us to write about it.

Writing every day can push us through, can help us feel better overall and can help us de-stress. Find 10-15 minutes every day to write. It doesn’t have to be something Nobel Prize worthy, just write. Make it a fun healthy habit. You can write whatever comes to mind, write about what you see, thoughts you have, write about your day, write about the walls you hit or come up against, or write whatever comes to mind, just write. Don’t know what to write? Begin writing that you don’t know what to write and go from there.

Today, let’s write: What do you do when you hit a wall?

Begin with one of the following phrases:

  1. I have hit a wall.
  2. When I hit a wall.
  3. I moved through the wall.
  4. I went around the wall.
  5. I went over the wall.
  6. The wall is in front of me.

Continue from there.

Describe the wall. What is it made of? Is it whipped cream and cherries? Could it be? Is it cement? Wool? Paper? Think about how you will go through the wall. Do you see a ladder you can use to go over it? Is there a river you can float down to get farther downstream where the wall ends?

Can you imagine yourself on the other side? What does the wall mean on this part of your journey?

How can you work with the wall instead of working against it?

When you hit a wall, try to see what it means in your life? To you? In that moment?

Why is the wall there? Is it there to tell you something? Is it a challenge? A frustration? A gift? Is it something to go through? To climb? To go around?

What do you do with the wall when you hit it? Or maybe you see it coming and look for a way to not hit it. We all hit walls sometimes or at least we come close to hitting walls, so then what? What can you do when you come up against a wall?

How do you take care of yourself to not get scraped up by the wall? How do you figure out how to learn from the wall? How can you admire it while you are in front of it and when you are past it as well?

Rather than try to escape the wall, lean into it- use it. Figure out what you do with it. Write about that to unlock your own secret map to dealing with this wall. Trust that you know how to get past this wall. And the next one. And the next.

Thank you for writing with us today.

If you would like to write with us each week, please follow the blog.

May you be well. May you find ways around or through walls that come up.

Best,

Liza

Published by lizawolfffrancis

Liza Wolff-Francis is a poet and writer with an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Goddard College who is proud to have served two terms as a member of the Albuquerque Poet Laureate Program’s Selection Committee. She was co-director for the 2014 Austin International Poetry Festival and a member of the 2008 Albuquerque Poetry Slam Team. She has an ekphrastic poem posted in Austin’s Blanton Art Museum by El Anatsui’s sculpture “Seepage” and her work has most recently appeared in Steam Ticket, eMerge, Minute Magazine, Weaving the Terrain: 100 Word Southwestern Poems, Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems, Poetic Routes, Poetry Pacific, Edge, and on various blogs. She has a chapbook out called Language of Crossing (2015, Swimming with Elephant Publications), which is a collection of poems about the Mexico- U.S. border. She loves breakfast food, popcorn and dark chocolate.

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