Does time get away from you? Is there enough time in your day…Your Life? To do the things you really want to do? Is your time filled with other peoples priorities? Is there just too much to do in the 24 hours of your day? Is it all you can do to not pull the blankets over your head because your day is already overwhelming and you have not even put your feet on the floor yet?
I used to feel this way every day. I said “yes” before thinking about what I was saying “no” to. This left me with resentment, exhaustion and completely overwhelmed. In the end no time left for me or what was important to me. What energy could I possibly have left to enjoy what was important to me? NONE!
Have you taken some time recently to do absolutely nothing? Spending it wistfully waiting for the calm in your mind? Listening to your breath? Slowly coming to the present moment…the moment when it is only the stillness of your body and mind in sync with that moment of time. Sitting comfortable or laying on the floor or ground. Breathe in through your nose, to the count of 4 – hold for a count of 4, blow out through your mouth to the count of 4.
Is it not working yet? Try again and do it over and over until you feel the little hair on your top lip move from the breath. Until you feel the inhale deep in the lower parts of your lungs and it expands on every breath in and drops on the exhale. This may not be easy but it is simple. When you finally get the hang of it you can enjoy the peace of that moment and notice what enters your mind. Acknowledge it and set it free coming back to counting every time.
When you feel fully relaxed you may open your eyes and notice what is around you. Your ability to focus sharpens through this process so things you see will seem brighter and clearer. Ideas will be quite vivid and formed.
I was quite amazed how I felt at first. The true calmness of my mind was unexpected. My body was relaxed but I had not experience such quiet in my head…not gerbils running amok on the wheels in my head. I needed more of this feeling, but it took many times and some years before my mind emptied so regularly I had to check in to be sure that it was still working! It worked overtime for decades!
This practice allowed me to figure out what was important to me and how was I going to simplify so that I could live in a way that was in line with what I wanted…not what the rest of the world seemed to want from me. I needed the peace in my head to give me space to hear what the Universe, my Higher Power or God had in store for me. My ideas were not working so well so I needed to learn how to turn ME off. This practice was a great start to that process.
Anyone can learn how to do this and I am sure that some of you are masters at this, while I am still a novice in some ways. I am not a silent retreat person, although I have heard of people who go on these retreats for up to ten days! I am not ready for that but I can sit and read for an entire day under the umbrella on the back deck only occasionally talking to my dog Max. Looking up to watch the bird at the feeder two feet away or a bee collecting pollen from the flowers just beyond my knees can give me an incredible moment of delight. I can enjoy watching the sheets flap in the wind on the clothes line knowing that they will be fresh and crisp on our bed tonight. The full enjoyment of many such moments are meditation to me as all else leaves my mind in those moments…these are moments that remind me to live in the moment.
“This too shall pass” is not a statement made for only the uncomfortable or difficult moments. It is also for those moments of pure joy that will pass onto the regular moments of life. When we get really good at living, there can be an incredible peace that hits us when we can relish the moments we are living as they are lived. Now that is perfection! I don’t expect to get to perfection, but life can feel perfect one moment at a time maybe a couple of times in my day. For now that feels pretty perfect to me.
Life has an interesting way of teaching us so much that we didn’t know we needed to learn. All we have to do is show up every day with curiosity in our heart and a willingness to just “be” in the moments of it.
There are many opportunities to just “be”, in the wonderfulness in them. These moments come in the peace of our space and the quiet of our minds.