The western culture is a do, do, do culture. We run and triple pack our time whether we are at an event and simultaneously tracking our phone messages or getting up early/staying up late to ‘get things done’. We are a stressed people and the pressure isn’t lifting. What are we to do about it?
Recently I read an article about a young boy who had to write an essay for school about who he wanted to be when he grew up. In it he talked about how busy his parents were and how they always had time to read their phones. His choice for who he wanted to be? His parents’ phones, so they would pay attention to him.
Last year I was on a family vacation. One mom was telling her son not to get on the iPad, to play with the other kids. Yet, as I looked up from my phone, all the adults were on their phones…not talking with each other, not playing games with each other or the kids. It was a ‘do as I say, not as I do’ moment. Do other families have the same problem? Are they even concerned about this constant focus on their phones?
Somehow, we have forgotten to turn off our phones and turn off the world. Years ago, we would go away for the weekend, shrug and say, oh, we are ‘out of range’ of the phone or internet. Then we would talk with each other or play board games with each other or take a walk or read a book. Not so today. Everyone pays more attention to the outside world even from the start of the day. I am just as guilty. I am retired and yet I check my phone when I wake up to see what has come up in my WhatsApp chats or on Facebook or Twitter. Daily I make myself put the phone down and turn to meditation or my morning walk. The wellbeing of our whole self is at stake here. We must take more time to listen within, to our bodies and to our Spirits.
We have to self-regulate our availability to the world and our availability to ourselves and our families. What is availability to our-self? Availability to our-self means paying attention to our wholeness which includes our body, our emotions, our Spirit and yes, our mind. It takes time to learn to not be thinking all the time. To let your body and Spirit talk to you thru your sentient intelligence. It takes practice to be quiet and listen within. We need quiet time to let our minds settle and find our own unique solutions to our problems. We need to observe what is occurring in our lives from the perspective of the disengaged observer. We can’t get to where we want to be, without first seeing where we are in the moment. We need to listen to our sentient intelligence which informs us about what is life-enhancing for us and what is life-defeating for us. No one else has your personal monitoring system. Only you.
There are moments in our lives that we are invited to go into the quiet. This month holds many of these moments. Time to perceive our personal universe from the perspective of listening and observing. We need to stop our connections to phones and social media for these moments, for these sacred times of connection. We will take deep breathes and wait in a pause for what is arising in our lives. We cannot plan or design what is arising. We need to nurture it with our internal listening and our stepped back observing.
It would be perilous for us to think that we can ‘do’ ourselves thru this quiet time. It can’t be done. What is arising has not existed before in our lives on this earth. Breathe deeply. Turn off your phone. Turn off your computer. Close your eyes. Listen to your emotions, listen to the physical sensations in your body, allow your body to relax, drop those shoulders and take a deep breath.
Psychological research has shown that our minds need this internal and external quiet time. This ‘away’ time allows our minds to gather all the information about our lives to be able to create solutions unique to our life. Sit in meditation, sit in a garden, breathe, take a walk in the woods or by the sea. Listen to your Spirit, that part of you that came here to be and do something in the world. We are in a high shifting time. We must make room for our Spirit to be more within our bodies and our minds. Take the time to BE You. Place the focus of your life on you. Leave the outside world separated from you. Be quiet within and listen.
Then allow the imaginings to arise. Don’t judge them or alter them. Let them arise and dance within your mind and your heart like the shadows that dance around a fire at night These are the seeds of your future finding fertile ground in your body and spirit, your matter and your energy. They have not taken their final form. Sit back, observe, and allow. This is a magical time for all of us. BE part of the magic for yourself.