There’s something I haven’t told you guys.

You already know about the Book of You, where I store Useful Information about how I function, along with what to do when I feel like crap.

But I have another binder that is kind of a companion book. It’s called the Revue Anthology, and it makes everything better.

Background.

The practice of keeping the Revue Anthology came from the realization that if I don’t review or process my experience of a thing after it happens, the learning often doesn’t stick.

But a review is a stressful, judgment-laden thing for me, and so — with the help of Metaphor Mouse, I discovered that I’d rather have a Revue. With spectacular dance moves. And spangles!

Way more fun.

I keep it simple. Because otherwise I wouldn’t do it.

It looks like this.

There are two questions.

1) What worked? 2) What might I want to try in the future?

That’s it.

If I do a thing — get my haircut, go on Emergency Vacation, go to a dinner party, whatever — it will end up getting a tiny section in the Revue Anthology.

Nothing fancy.

I grab a brightly colored sheet of paper and name it (Haircut!).

The processing itself happens on notebook paper. What worked? And what might I want to try in the future?

Super useful things sometimes get circled or highlighted.

If there’s something incredibly, unbelievably important that I need to remember (Seriously, do not ever go to dinner parties because you suffer unimaginable sufferings…), that can get transferred into the Book of Me.

But basically I just take notes and then put the page into the Revue Anthology.

Here are some examples from recent entries:

Roller Derby: bout day.

What worked?

  • Leaving earlier than seems necessary.
  • Remembering the seat cushion.
  • Costumes!
  • Keeping season passes by the door.
  • Not drinking.
  • Doing your rituals beforehand.

What might I want to try in the future?

  • Now that it’s spring, you don’t need to bring a jacket.
  • Using the money pocket instead of bringing a wallet.
  • A closing ritual to come down from the high.
  • Extra penguins around the force field.

Facial.

What worked?

  • Having made the hard phone call beforehand so I didn’t have it on my mind.
  • Working with an intention.
  • Actually remembering to use moisturizer for an entire week. Sparklepoints for me!
  • Stretching feet.

What might I want to try in the future?

  • More time to get centered before getting there.
  • A ritual for leaving (still trying to get better at closing things).

Pineapple Upside Down days

Note: this is what I call weekends. Long story, but I’m playing around with not working weekends and it’s crazy hard.

What worked?

  • Morning walk in the sun.
  • Deviating from what we normally eat during the week.
  • Catching myself when things aren’t working and pulling out.
  • Remembering to have a theme for the Upside Down Days, so I can journal on it or draw or something if I start to get bored or distracted.
  • Starting the day with extra meditation.

What might I want to try in the future?

  • Going online is always a tragic mistake. Always.
  • If I want to go online “just to look something up”, either have the gentleman friend do it or write a sticky note and put it on the wall for later.
  • An outfit? Ridiculous legwarmers? A wig? Something that serves as a reminder that this is the mode we’re in.
  • More transition time in and out.

So that’s how the Revue works.

It probably sounds more complicated than it is.

I actually never spend more than a minute or two on it. Plus the thirty seconds that it takes to track down magic markers (ahem, note for Book of Me to keep markers everywhere!).

There’s no pressure to figure out all the things that I might want to try in the future, because there will be lots more derby bouts and ohmygoodness years of Pineapple Upside Down days.

All I’m doing is noting what is working, which always feels good.

And instead of focusing on how I’m a colossal failure, the focus is on finding one or two things that I might — conceivably, possibly, theoretically, no pressure! — mess around with in the future.

It’s a gentle Revue. And the spangles definitely help.

And comment zen for today.

If you are interested in playing with a Revue or with the idea of Revue-ing, that’s fantastic.

As always, we go by the People Vary principle, which means that you are welcome to adjust and adapt anything I use in ways that work for you.

And we do this while keeping in mind the principles of non-violence and compassion. However: forcing ourselves to be compassionate is not compassionate. So never more compassion than you can stand. :)

We all have our stuff. We’re all working on our stuff. It’s a process.

I would love to read some mini-revues if you feel like doing one. Or thoughts about ways you might be interested in playing around with this practice or a similar one.

xox