Being Present When it Matters
There's a switch that can turn on in the midst of panic or anxiety. I call it the "be reasonable" switch and I have to turn it on quite frequently. Especially during these days of new beginnings. We’ve entered the fall season in several ways: school has started for kids, new semesters for teachers and students are starting up, and we’re done with vacations. It's easy to become overwhelmed with deadlines to meet, supplies to buy, and people to see.
During these moments of stress and over-busyness, it's imperative to stop and talk some sense into yourself, or disaster can ensue. I have an extraordinary talent for subconsciously transporting myself to another time and place while doing mundane tasks such a reading, listening to people talk, and even driving. Unfortunately, these are moments that I need to be present, and letting my mind drift usually comes back to bite me.
When I am in these moments of panic, worry, and over-busyness, it's quite easy for me to be thinking of other things that distract me from the present situation. I don't want to be a person that doesn't really hear others. I hate not being heard myself! I want to be able to turn that switch of worry off when it matters most. I want to embrace where I am, and with the people I’m with and to be all there.
At times, it’s almost impossible. But most times, all it takes is a bit of self-reminding. These little taps on the shoulder can sound something like, "hey, it's ok, you can do this" or "this is what you want, remember?" or "OK, cut it out and focus. People are important!"
And I don’t think it’s a stretch to suggest that starting your day with a moment of stillness helps put all the craziness into perspective. It helps set the stage for the rest of the day. It orients your time around something deeper than “work,” as meaningful as that work may be. Taking time to listen to your calling for the day helps to remind you who you are, where you are going, and what's most important.
Oh, and a cup of tea is really nice in those moments too.
by Kristina Morris