“At the center of your being you have the answer, you know who you are and you know what you want.” — LAO TZU
If you're anything like me, you have a desire to create more time for yourself, your growth and your wellbeing. You'd like to have a bit more stillness and connection with your self.
I think one of the barriers to this is that many of us feel a bit time poor. There are so many other priorities in our day, and with what's left over we don't necessarily have the energy or the desire left to "find ourselves". We'd like to unwind the day and go to bed. There's an implicit assumption that "finding ourselves" is yet another task that needs a specific time and place, and it's something we have to fit into our day. One day. Sometime in the future.
The shift comes when you realise it's a change in what you're already doing that matters. Keep doing all the things you're doing each day (if you choose to). Maybe consider changing the way you approach the tasks. Can you keep part of your attention on how you feel as you go about the day? Can you notice when you're doing things that you don't particularly want to do? Can you notice when you're joyful and feeling great? None of this takes extra time; it's all just a starting point for noticing your habits.
An ancient yoga text, The Yoga Sutras, emphasised repeated practice as the way to deepen discernment and comprehend with clarity who we already are. Through doing the postures again and again, we begin to notice details we wouldn't have seen at initial pass. Much like walking along the street you live on but each time you walk it you try to really pay attention and notice new qualities. Or you could walk along the street and see the same features all the time, never noticing the flower that blooms one week of the year at your neighbour's front gate.
So whether or not you practise yoga, you take what you're already doing in a day and just check in. How are you? If you wish, you can watch 5 breaths with complete attention, or you can just notice how you feel while you sip your morning coffee.
It's one of the best gifts you could give yourself to check in.
Who knows what you'll find when you do.
Here you'll find essays and musings on applied mindfulness. What does this look like on a daily basis? How can you infuse it in your day to enjoy yourself more? Join hundreds of others on the the mailing list (link in footer) to get these straight to your inbox.