Still riding a yoga high from an early morning yoga class, on my walk to work this morning, this blog post landed on me. A few things that were said/moments I experienced over the last week or so came together and clicked for me. That feeling, at that moment, may be the closest I’ll ever get to my fantasy of being able to stop time and move around in it like Evie in Out of this World.
The thing that clicked for me has everything to do with the theme of this blog–Make Time. What I realized is that “busyness” is relative and time as we know it does not exist.
Let me explain. I am in my third week of yoga teacher training (which adds up to at least 20 hours a weekend, sometimes more). I’m working on renewal of my National Boards certification for teaching. I’m teaching full-time. I’m helping a talented woman get her stories out and into the world by editing and designing her book. Plus a few other things on the side. I’m guessing you’re thinking right now that I sound “busy”, and that I don’t have time. I’ve certainly been in spots like this where I felt that too. Not this time.
“Busyness” is getting flayed a bit by wellness culture right now. A problem is: we define “busyness” by the number of things we fill our schedules with or have on our to-do lists. From what I can tell “busyness” is a state of mind. If I try to hold things in the future in my mind, I am busy. If I can stay present in the moment and do one thing at a time, I can pack a day to the brim and never feel busy at all. This will require a few things: practice, trust, and an open mind. Our minds run on the tracks we’ve laid out for them through repetition, so staying present will take practice. It may also require you to get your phone habits in check., because our devices are creating terrible habits of mind on top of everything else. Be patient and practice. Trust plays a role here. To be present, we need to trust that the future will arrive and that we will be present for it. What about an open mind? Well, it may turn out that on that list of thirty things you’re simultaneously thinking about doing, a third of them may never happen. A lot of “busy” people actually aren’t doing much at all. They are too paralyzed by how busy everything is.
And then there is time. Our most precious resource, right? Yet, ironically, the more we think about how limited time is and try to hold it fast, the faster it goes and the less of it we have. In one sense, these past few weeks I’ve had less time. However, since so much of that time has been spent developing a mindfulness practice, I do not feel short on time. In fact, I feel sort of amazed at how much more time I have than I thought. My days are more packed for sure, but I feel as though I am moving in slow motion when I’m really in it. I’m certainly not thinking about not having time.
We make time by staying present for the moment we’re in and letting go of our obsession with how limited time is. It is limited, of course. And no one knows just how much time they have. That’s the paradox. To savor the time we have, we need to trust and be. And you don’t need to be an alien from another planet like Evie to have her superpowers.
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Some past posts to keep you making time:
It’s about the routine and how you shake up the routine
There are things you will have to give up
Monday, a run through the driving rain