Stop the world, I want to get off!

…is today’s theme for pondering upon. Sometimes life feels like a high speed train and I whisk along and forget that I am actually present and actually very still inside amid the flurry of activities taking place.

To prevent being swept up in an unconscious blur of thoughts and find that the day has gone already before I know it, I take a couple of simple little measures that help me to be actually be here, right now, right in life.

  1. I remind myself regularly that I am breathing right now. And how much I love breathing when I remember that I am doing it, it is wonderful to feel the breath go in and out and in and out, such a joy.
  2. I regularly ask myself ‘Do I want to be doing this?’ and since some less than fabulously enjoyable tasks need to be done I sometimes ask ‘Is this necessary’ and ‘Is this helping me to flourish?’ as secondary questions. If the answer is no then I change task. Life is too short to spend it doing things I don’t want to do.
  3. I remember to LOOK at my surroundings. Sometimes if a thought has taken hold and a stressful feeling has arisen, I find something beautiful to look at. A tree, a plant, a bird, anything like that helps me to break the trance and reconfigure.
  4. I remember to be curious about what I am feeling in my body right now this second, and feel myself in my body as I sit or walk along. This goes for smelling, and hearing too. Body awareness can be so helpful to establish ourselves in the ‘still centre of the turning world’.
  5. I go a nature walk every day. There I am surrounded by an abundance of soothing beautiful natural forms. These inspire a sense of awe which help to stop me in my tracks and focus my attention on being here and now.
  6. And in case I forget which I often do many times a day a mindfulness app on my phone sends random reminders

The result is that more moments are cherished and appreciated. I have the space to allow the natural gratitude to arise, the joy that sits there always and is too often shouted down by thoughts.

“Listen to the song of life. Look for it and listen to it first in your own heart. At first you may say: ‘It is not there; when I search I find only discord.’ Look deeper. If again you are disappointed, pause and look deeper again. There is a natural melody, an obscure fount in every human heart. It may be hidden over and utterly concealed and silenced—but it is there. At the very base of your nature you will find faith, hope and love”. Light on the Path by Mabel Collins


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