What do you focus on? What do I focus on?
We often hear “pay attention and you will see”. Or the common refrains – “be conscious” and “be mindful”.
Yet sometimes, not paying attention isn’t such a bad thing. “Let it be” and “ignorance is bliss” as the sayings go.
Exhortations, sayings, contradictions…which is true?
Someone recently asked me, “do you carry this with a heavy spirit?” This, being the fact that my week was filled with many responsibilities and expectations, and I had mentioned I had little time to myself.
Her question seemed appropriate. As I verbalized what I was experiencing, what I did became apparent.
The fact the week was filled with things-to-do of itself didn’t influence how I felt about it, nor did it influence my actions.
It is only when we put meaning to a fact that it will invoke emotions and provoke actions.
What did a week filled with responsibilities and expectations mean for me? Did it mean I was a slave to doing, or that I had no choice, or that I must be suffering due to a lack of leisure time? Did this experience of a week mean my life was in a perpetual state of being wearisome or hard?
Ah, the importance of meanings. (Thus the name I had chosen for my blog here, the musings part denotes a little light-heartedness 🙂 ).
I did not resent the week nor suffered. I looked after myself, and while I knew I had little time to myself that week, it was a choice I had made with full knowledge the week won’t last forever and I would take time the following week. I do not go to a place of fixed narratives – of what a week, my week, should be or how things ought to be.
And my answer? No, I did not carry it with a heavy spirit. I was sufficiently dispassionate about the items on the to-do-list. I had prioritized what matters to me and I took action accordingly. As I approached each item, I did my best – all the while being aware not to over-exert myself, all the while maintaining my integrity, all the while ensuring I did no harm, that I was as generous, kind and compassionate as I possibly could, all the while taking delight in the connections those moments provide. And because I was taking action in the spirit of awareness, I could also comfortably accept this – the outcome would be what it would be.
The spirit with which we approach the minutiae of our lives and the meaning we ascribe to the events in our lives impact on our overall assessment of how our lives are.
Paying attention, being conscious and being mindful of our selves is an awareness of ourselves in the moment. Of what matters and our values and purpose, and the meaning we wish to bring forth.
And flawed as I am, I am certain I have missed many things along the way. 🙂
So how do you carry your life?
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