Well it is that time again for many of us. Time reflected and remembering this year – 2017. Some have fond memories and others it is an unhappy time. I’ve known many with some terrible and unexpected losses. I too had it with the loss of my Mom. I spent years with her health in decline but that didn’t mean I was ready for the feelings of loosing her. Still I found myself realizing that I didn’t have to live in my thoughts and feel only the loss. Fact is that with terrible loss is also a lot of love and peace.
We often live so much in our thoughts. Worry, plan, be prepared. Then start all over again. I work with many who get very little sleep. Instead they keep pushing, planning and worrying about what is to come. Impacting all ages which hurts their health – mind and bodies. It is so much more than just than the need to take a break, vacation to rest. Our brains start too loose the ability to focus and make good choices. Soon the thoughts are unable to stay focused and move faster than our focus and brain can keep up. Very much like a drummer that is off one beat from the rest of the band. It means that while you think you are making good decisions you very well may not be. How often do you have to ask someone to repeat themselves? How often do you have to apologize or do projects over because of error?
The daily decisions are impacted; like stopping our car sooner in traffic, a presentation for work or listening to important issues your family is having in their life.
Ok – seeing it is one thing but it is time to take action. Sure it won’t be easy. But try. Find times over the holiday especially to try out some things. Like put your computer or phone away more. Less time on posts to tell everyone about your event. Instead be at the event. Fully present. When someone is talking to you just listen more. Make eye contact and when your thoughts start going elsewhere stop, take a breath and look at them again. Listen to them without thinking about your response.
There is a story I heard about a man who was all tangled up in a thorn bush. Another person came by and saw him in pain. Suggested ways he could untangle himself and he did this and finally came out of the bush. “Oh that is so much better. I’m free! Thank you so much”. But then he saw a person looking at the thorn bush he just left. “No” he said. “You can’t have my thorn bush. That is mine” and he rushes back into the bush to be tangled up again. Now you may think this is a silly story but we all do this. Afraid of someone else taking away our identiy and grab back onto it and hold it like a warm blanket around us. Notice it when you are asked who are you? Do the things we say about ourselves keep us tangled? How about when we have an injury? Do we identify with it only? Or can we ask for help and find ways out of the thorn bush we were in? The hardest part is not going back to it. For it is our comfort even if it is painful.
I’m not perfect with this either. But I am seeing some changes in my own mind and ability to focus more on the present. Additionally when I was dealing with the loss of my Mom I found it so helpful to listen to the signals my body was sending. Be still more. Stop fighting with myself and then let go of my grip. When we can let go of the way I thought it would be, so much more can happen.
Pausing helps us to see the fuller picture. That even with one thought there is so much more going on. Therefore when it is easy for me to feel sad about my year I can also feel so grateful for it as well. For at least it means I am here; alive and so glad for all those I got to meet and know this year.
If you are reading this I am so glad we connected and I hope that in some small way my message has helped you. Thank you for those that write me to let me know about your journey and feedback. May you find time for yourself to untangle yourself from your thoughts and find peace and happiness from within.