What I am doing today is important because I am exchanging a day of my life for it. ~Unknown
A few tidbits of inspiration as we wind down the year! ~j
When your to-do list gets overwhelming, there's a natural way to figure out your next step. Tune into this gentle process.
By Jennifer Louden
It's mid-morning, and several minor crises have already derailed you. Your plan for the day is in shambles, your to-do list feels like a boulder around your neck, and all you want to do is hide. You’re reaching for a diet Coke or more coffee in the hopes that it will give you the energy to decide which item on your list to tackle. Then you remember that there’s another way. You make the choice.
You feel your feet connecting with the ground beneath you. You take a deep breath and reach your arms overhead, exhaling with a huge sigh. You put your hand on your heart and recall feeling balanced and flowing, trusting the flow of life. You gently ask, "What choice feels the easiest in this moment?" You visualize yourself bringing this question into your heart, and take a breath or two to infuse it with flow and peace. Perhaps a brief image of your sister comes to mind. Or maybe you hear a refrain of an old song, and when you focus on it, you realize it reminds you of your sister. Or perhaps you remember the feeling of your sister hugging you. You call your sister, have a lovely chat, and when you get off the phone, you have new energy —enough to move you forward to the next task awaiting you.
Faith is connected to hope and hope means believing in spite of the evidence and then watching the evidence change.
Do you begin to see to get the picture of how this approach flows with life? I’m not proposing you sell your worldly possessions and move to the woods to live in an unheated yurt. I’m not recommending you consult crystals or the I Ching before moving a muscle. What I am saying is that when you think you’re lost, overwhelmed, and without direction, you do “know” what to do to restore your balance and your direction–but it’s a different kind of knowing, one you already possess, and need only be reminded of how to access.
This is part of the process I call "Life Organizing." It's infinitely richer than plotting your days in 15-minute increments in your day planner, but it does require trusting your own experiences. It involves a quick in-the-moment check-in that lowers your stress while allowing you to move beyond your conscious mind and respond with creativity and intuition to challenges and opportunities. Here are some of the check-in steps from the example above:
1. Connect: Move your body – breathe deeper, stretch your arms overhead, step outside and feel the breeze on your skin- anything that connects you with your life energy.
2. Feel: Tune into your heart, which can give you information your head can’t. Simply put your attention on your heart, perhaps by placing your hand there. Recall a time in which you felt loved and appreciated or loving and appreciative toward someone else. Linger there for a few seconds.
3. Inquire: Ask a mindful question. This opens up possibilities you literally couldn’t see before. In the first example, the mindful question was: What choice feels the easiest in this moment? Another of my favorite questions: What do I need to know right now?
4. Allow: To allow is simply trusting that by connecting, feeling, and inquiring, you will hear or see or feel or sense what your next step is—and only your next step.. Allowing is not about belief: it’s about noticing your experience and opening to your next step, allowing love, inspiration, and knowing to come into your body and heart, to inform and direct you.