Thanks to my girls’ love of all things Wicked – the musical, not the adjective, thankfully – the song, “Defying Gravity” is on my running playlist and often in the constant loop inside my brain. It’s a super fun song, and Idina and Kristen totally kill it. I defy you to listen to it, if you haven’t.

That said, this morning as I was packing my gear bag for a torturous, I mean awesome, cycle trainer workout followed by a swim workout, that song was cued in my brain. And it hit me—-it’s because I was so pleased with myself for getting ready for the workouts , actually looking forward to them, and (for once) not overthinking, that I felt like I was defying gravity—figuratively, of course.

I’ve had more emotional challenges in my life than I’d wish on anyone, particularly in the past two years, so I suppose that’s why this feeling is so prominent in my life right now. We all know what the song is about, but how often do we think about the OTHER definition of gravity: “extreme or alarming importance; serious or critical nature.” I realized that when we face something that seems daunting—whether it’s cleaning out your closet, getting all of that !@#$ tax info together, or dealing with heartache or an unwanted major life change—defying the gravity of the FEELINGS about the situation are as constant a challenge to me as defying Newton’s laws of gravity.

Not allowing the negative emotions to dominate my perspective daily is an ongoing challenge but worth the effort to defy them! It often takes as much or more energy as completing my workouts this morning took, and often much more uncomfortably. But just like the workouts…..we get better at it with practice. Practice doesn’t make perfect……it makes progress.

Conquering the overwhelming feelings associated with the gravity of a situation is satisfying, liberating…..it’s defying THAT gravity.

Caroline Arey

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