Saturday, March 20, 2010


We all need time to let the dust settle!  Progress exhausts us.  Sometimes we all get so caught up in the day to day business and busyness of life that we have neither the time nor the quiet to understand ourselves or our goals.

I for one find I have no time for inward attention.  You know what I mean - that time when we take care of ourselves.  We need, as well, the time for the nourishing of relationships.  Our calendars are packed full of things that have to be done - or do they?  We have to 'pencil in' lunch with a friend, if nothing more important comes up.  I have heard people say they have no time for friends anymore. What a sad statement that is. It is as if our worth is determined by our busyness. 

This same busyness tricks us into trusting it.  Then what?  It exhausts us. It leaves us breathless and sobbing.  How do we restore sanity to our lives?

I know when I go out of town I leave time the day before for a margin of error.  If something can go wrong it will.  But I am not placed in crisis mode.  Why can't we do this in other areas of our lives? 

We work faster and faster and find less and less meaning in anything we do.   Okay so we need to say 'no' more often.  Richard  A. Swenson, M.D. says in his book Margin, " Saying No is not just a good idea -  it has now become a mathematical necessity.  Without this two-letter word, I doubt that regaining margin is possible.  If there are fifteen good things to do today and you can do only ten of them, you will need to say No five times.  This is not rocket science, but instead kindergarten logic.  Yet saying No, for most of us, is enormously difficult."

As Anne Lamott, says, "No is a complete sentence."  But for some reason we are afraid to say this word for fear people find us selfish, insensitive, or rude.  So we stay overloaded.  Overloaded by hurry, expectations, fatigue, work, traffic, technology, people, stuff, noise, debt, decisions...the list goes on. 

For me overload hurts and is hurting me. The overload of other people  hurts me.  Perhaps this is why I find solace in Anne Morrow Lindbergh's, Gift from the Sea. Perhaps we need to strip down to that place deep inside where we find authenticity.

Wouldn't it be nice to plan for free time, to be available to your friends, to not have to rush out the door, relish the moments and the memories, and perhaps accomplish less but do the right thing.  Consider today what you would do if you let the dust settle.

We need to remove our masks and become 'real' - like The Velveteen Rabbit.  And in becoming real we just might be able to say 'no' and save our own lives.

For me for now watching the clouds roll across the sky and listening to Marshall Styler's Mockingbird Station is  a start.


 "Who is not afraid of pure space -- that breathtaking empty space of an open door?"

"Arranging a bowl of flowers in the morning can give a sense of quiet in a crowded day - like writing a poem or saying a prayer."

"My life cannot implement in action the demands of all the people to whom my heart responds."

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

"Life is a journey, but it is not a race.  Do yourself a favor and slow down."
Richard A. Swenson

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