As I have many times confessed, my life becomes chaotic at times and I lose sight of the things that make me feel better. Things like meditation and mindful awareness of the present moment. When I feel overwhelmed by information or rapid changes in my life, sometimes I start trying to focus on too many things at once. All the things that need my attention compete for time.
When I have many things on my mind at once, none of it gets any quality attention, there are these half-assed attempts to meditate and to settle down and let the answers come to me. And I feel wound up because I know I’m spinning my wheels.
One thing I have learned over the years is that I never really figure anything out, not the big stuff anyway. The most productive way for me to deal with the questions life presents is to be still and silent and quiet my mind. The answers just come in those moments. There’s no figuring anything out, it all just starts to make sense.
Focusing attention on only one thing at a time helps too. That is the problem with letting life run me rather than me running my life. When I’m trying to figure out too many things at once, my attention gets spread out and the amount of attention I am able to pay to any one thing is small and weak. Not enough to accomplish anything.
And then there is the stuff I can’t do anything about. But the thoughts intrude anyway. Anything that has to do with figuring out the behavior of another person is a waste of my time and I wish to stop that kind of merciless, torturous thinking.
“If you can solve your problem, then what is the need of worrying? If you cannot solve it, then what is the use of worrying.” ~Shantideva
Something I find interesting is how one’s physical world reflects one’s state of mind. When I am calm my surroundings tend to be neat and organized, which leads to even more feelings of peace and calm. As soon as my mind starts running in several different directions like a pack of wild horses, my bedroom and the rest of my home become cluttered and messy. Not dirty, just not tidy. Once that slips away from me for a day or two, it begins to also feel overwhelming and then my surroundings look much the way my mind feels.
My moment of clarity came today while cleaning the bathroom. I was fully present while I was cleaning. I was reminding myself to stay in the present moment and I was aware of each thing I was doing. There was a tremendous sense of peace that came with it. It reinforces my belief that NOW is the only moment that truly exists. NOW is where transformation happens. NOW is where the present moment meets eternity. And when you are here, you can feel the power.
The past several days my mind has been in the past sort of failing to accept how things have unfolded, and in the future, trying to will things the way I wish for them to go. When I finally wake back up and recognize the futility of what I am doing, then I am able to bring everything back to the present, where there is never anything to worry about. In any given moment, if I’m here, breathing, heart beating, I’m fine. The moment those things cease…still fine.
I’m grateful for quiet moments and life’s little responsibilities that help remind me that the only thing that is important is right now and what I do with it. And it always boils down to the same question: Do I want to put more love and peace into the world or more fear, worry and chaos?
I think the answer is obvious.