Monday, June 28, 2010
Hey this is some encouragement for anyone, but I got it from a website dedicated to women like me who live with PCOS.
Are You Rushing Through Life?
"Stop rushing through life. Live it instead."
"We must be completely present for what we are doing, without sacrificing or rushing what's in front of us in order to get to 'more important' stuff later. No matter how mundane the activity, treat everything as important and take pleasure in it. At bottom, whatever we are doing right now is what we are engaged in and it deserves our full attention and appreciation."
These thoughtful passages are from "Less: Accomplishing More by Doing Less", by Marc Lesser. It made me think about how often I do one thing while thinking about something else.
Last week I went to my exercise studio where I do a rather complex set of routines called Gyrotonic. Considerable concentration is needed to get the most out of this exercise routine.
As soon as I started, my mind jumped to a phone conversation I had with someone a few hours earlier. I become so absorbed in the details of the conversation and what I would do next with this person that I started doing my exercises incorrectly. Finally I got so distracted that I could not think of what exercise to do next.
In other words, by thinking of something else, I lost the benefit of helping my body by doing the correct exercise.
There are also consequences when another person is "not present". A couple of weeks ago I had a phone conversation with someone who obviously was washing the dishes in her sink as we were having our conversation. We were discussing what I thought were some pretty important business issues. But I felt like she was not giving our conversation the 100% of her attention that the topic deserved. Not only was I annoyed but I felt we did not accomplish as much as we could have.
Was this person so terrifically busy that she was compelled to do the dishes while talking with me? Was she signaling to me that our conversation was less important to her than dirty plates in her sink?
You can actually accomplish more and have a higher quality of life if you focus your full attention on the present moment, and focus on the most important task at hand.
I encourage you to do two things:
1) Simply notice where your mind is while engaged in an activity. Bring awareness to your behavior without judging it.
2) If your mind has wandered, bring it back to the present activity by saying something like: "I choose to be fully engaged in this activity right now."
Use your senses to ground yourself in the present moment. What do you feel with your body? What do you hear or see? What can you taste or smell?
You'll know you're getting it when you feel yourself slowing down, relaxing, and breathing more deeply and fully. Then, wait for the moments of joy to come -- the experience of realizing that this very moment is actually the best time of your life, regardless of what you're doing.