This is the season when it’s especially easy to get caught up in the rush of life. So many of us find ourselves stressed out by gift buying, social engagements, and even strained interactions with certain family members. We feel the pressure of all that needs to be done; of everything pulling for our attention. We find ourselves frantically rushing to get everything done. Even in these busy, chaotic times, there are actions we can take to bring our attention and energy back to ourselves and move gracefully through. The following inquiries and practices can help us return to our center, even when we need to move quickly:
Part of slowing down is becoming mindful to what it is that you want. We can look at the actions we are taking in our lives with curiosity to see if they match with our desires. If we want things like spiritual growth, for example, we can ask, “are we saying yes to things that nurture and support that growth?”
How badly do we want it? Are we able no say to other things in life when it comes time to make choices? What elements do we really need in our life? What elements do we really love in our life? Are we saying yes to the things that matter? Or are we saying yes to things that just keep us busy? This can be especially tricky at this time of year, when we are told that it is normal to abandon ourselves and follow the endless stream of obligations. Check in and see which of your actions actually bring you closer to your desires.
So often, we focus on quantity over quality. However, if we are focused on a few things, then we can go very deep with these few things. We do not have a lot of time, and the time we do have can be spread very thin. Out of all the things you do, how many of them really matter?
Being selective in choosing the things that we really want to experience in this lifetime is very important. It’s very easy to get sidetracked with “life”. Sometimes I work with patients who are dying. With them, I see that when death comes up, then we really look at how we spend our time. The lesson is to live as though we are dying, as the say, because we are. Creating boundaries can help keep us focused on what we do want. To create boundaries you have to know what you really want–to be able to say yes or no accordingly. What are your boundaries?
Watching Your Attention