Catching Fireflies

finding magic along the way

Oh, Sweet Moments!

slowdown6Time is something that no one seems to have enough of. Everyone is running around busy and stressed with no time to just sit and enjoy the sunshine and a cool breeze. I, too, am a great multitasker. In my day job, I have to be. I am the sole phone-answerer, bill-payer, scheduler, computer tech department, check-writer, typist, gofer, playground coordinator… I wear a lot of hats, and unfortunately, I wear many of them simultaneously.

I am learning to not let this carry over to the rest of my life.

It is easy to do, you know. It is easy to get caught up in the fray, the drama, the struggle, the busy. But when I shut the door to my home or am running personal errands on the weekend, I try very hard to concentrate on the now, instead of focusing on the list of things I have to do.

This is not a skill we are taught in school. We are taught to strive, to achieve, to keep up with the Jones’s. We juggle classes and jobs and friends and parties and still manage to squeeze in some sleep. We hit adulthood surrounded by people who are more whirling dervish than zen master. I used to want to live like that.

When I first graduated from college, all I wanted to do was move to New York City, the capital of hustle and bustle, and climb the ladder in the music business. Maybe I would work with a record company or a concert promoter. A fine plan until I realized what starting wages were and how big a cardboard box on the corner they would buy me.

busy2Somewhere in the first few years after I got my degree, I realized I didn’t like big cities. Sadly, the music business was in big cities. I didn’t enjoy the hustle and bustle. I couldn’t hear myself think with all the noise and sights and sounds. So I shifted paths and stayed where it was quieter. Still, I find the noise too much sometimes.

My husband is the same. We crave quiet and solitude and I think we could both happily live in a cabin set deep in the woods with no one around – as long as we had internet! 🙂 I think above all else, we crave time. Time carved out from the hours we have to put in to pay the bills, time to wallow in whatever outlet our creative juices are steering us towards in a given moment. I think the majority of people, if they were to slow down long enough to admit it, crave time to just be in the moment, to rest their minds and spirits and rejuvenate.

Annie Lamont, who I have mentioned before, is a writer whom I admire for her wisdom. She recently wrote a post for Sunset, titled “Time Lost and Found.” In it she stated that in order to find the time we crave, and in so doing this, find our connections to others, we have to be willing to unplug the phone, TV, internet and let the technology that fills our days drop away. It is only be consciously carving out time to pursue what makes us come alive, will we reach our final years without regret. “Time is not free—that’s why it’s so precious and worth fighting for.” So true! She wrote;

I’ve heard it said that every day you need half an hour of quiet time for yourself, or your Self, unless you’re incredibly busy and stressed, in which case you need an hour. I promise you, it is there. Fight tooth and nail to find time, to make it. It is our true wealth, this moment, this hour, this day.

busyI have written about the busy drug before, a couple times, (you might say it is something I feel is worth repeating) and how it can fog our minds and make us think we are living full and important lives. In reality, “I am so busy” is just a drug.  I have stricken the phrase from my day-to-day conversations. Try it! You might be surprised at what comes out instead of this easy excuse.

Slow down! Breathe! Wallow! Life moves fast enough without you adding to the noise.


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