Yesterday I had the good fortune to visit with a dear friend whom I hadn't seen for quite some time. I arrived at the coffee shop a bit early so that I could purchase one of their divine cinnamon buns. They sell out quickly and I had promised my family that I would come home with one. Standing at the counter I ordered my bun to go as well as a coffee. I watched and made friendly small talk with the woman behind the counter as she carefully placed my treat in a box to go, prepared my coffee and punched the amount into the cash register. She kindly passed the debit machine over to me and I proceeded to complete the transaction, all the while continuing my polite conversation. As I passed the machine back to the woman, she gave me a surprised look. At that moment she and I both realized that I had just spent $13 on a $4.24 bun and coffee! It was obviously a mistake, but the point is that neither one of us were really paying any attention to what was right in front of us. It was a reminder to me that I often go through my day that way. My mind is clearly not focusing to what my body is doing and I am often spending more time in my head than watching what is going on around me. When we are children our parents teach us to cross the street by first stopping, looking and then going. Perhaps we need to do this with every moment that presents itself? In every moment we have the opportunity to STOP, get quiet and stop the chatter in our minds. Then LOOK with an open heart and use all our senses to enjoy what that moment is presenting. Finally, GO and do whatever life is offering at that moment! Do it fully participating with our mind, body and soul!
I realize that I haven't officially launched my web site yet but I thought I could get a head start on some blogs so that you could have something to read, if you choose.
The first thing I have realized, is that a week goes by way too fast!! I thought that a weekly posting would be doable. And I think it will be once I get into a routine, but for now it is a struggle. Not that I don't have plenty to say, that is not the issue.
Today's title is doing less, being more. I guess maybe I need to practice that a bit more. But what does that mean? My current reading selection is Essential Ayurveda by Shubhra Krishan. She says the Ayurvedic route to great health involves two simple steps:
Here is a scenario she describes in the book, not unlike one I lived on a daily basis:
"You have just emerged from a meeting with the boss, and for the next two hours you worry about the furrow on her brow and the tone of her voice. Determined to win her smile by the end of the day, you immerse yourself in a sea of files. In doing this, you ignore your dry throat, your stale breath, your aching eyes, your sore neck, your dry skin and your stretched nerves. Later, at home its the spouse, the kids, and dog all waiting for you to give them time, attention and dinner.
All the while, in every way possible, other people are deciding the course of your actions. We are listening to them so hard, trying so desperately to please them, that we no longer listen to ourselves. In "doing" all the time, we forget to just "be".
Ironically, over time, the more we "do" the less we achieve. All that effort takes its toll on our physical, mental and emotional health. It disconnects us from our deeper needs, leaving us empty and dull.
Now imagine a different, more pleasant scenario.
You come to work determined to win your own smile at the end of the day. That is, you remember to log off your computer, take a short walk, drink a glass of water and moisturize your skin every thirty minutes. Instead of "grabbing" an indifferent lunch, you bring fresh fruit, yogurt, and a whole grain sandwich from home. You don't take coffee breaks, you take exercise breaks.
Just one day of treating yourself well is sure to set off a chain of happy events. You return to your desk humming after your short break, and suddenly the solution to a niggling little problem pops into your head. You find yourself being nice to your coworkers. Instead of the usual post-lunch slump, you feel a post-lunch kick. Back home, you want to make a good dinner instead of warming yesterday's meal.
In treating yourself well for a day, you achieved both doing less and being more. You still did things, but what you did was gloriously different from what you had been doing for so long. You let yourself slow down instead of driving yourself hard. You did not misuse your body and you did not pressure your mind. You began the process of healing.
You lived Ayurveda today."
On that note, I think I will go meditate!
Wow! Who would have thought! Me, who is so not techie! I must say, one of the hardest things I have ever done was to press that little button in the corner that says "new post". I had to really get over myself! I had to get over all those little negative thoughts that say, " Who are you to think that anyone would EVER be interested in what you have to say?" Maybe that is true. But I am doing this as much for me as for anyone who may, by chance, decide to read what I have written.
Doing it for me to prove to myself that it can be done! In our Happiness Project, one of the tasks was to start a blog. That sounded so daunting to me that I never would have thought that I would do such a thing. Yet, here I am. One of my values is to never ask anyone to do something that I would not be willing to do. That was the driving force behind me pushing that little button in the corner.
I hope to write once a week and to offer tidbits on the current self-development/self-improvement book that I am reading. I have learned much in the last few years and have grown more than I ever thought possible. Much of that growth I attribute to the 30 minutes of reading I do each and every morning.
I invite you to take what you need and leave what you don't!
Whew! Now that it's over, I can honestly say, it's not that bad!
As a life long learner with a ferocious growth mind set, Kammi devotes a minimum of 30 minutes a day to reading. Join her as she passes on abridged versions of the topics she finds most interesting. Enhance your life by taking what you need and leaving what you don't!