My cousin recommended an Eckhart Tolle book to me the other day. I resisted. He insisted. I really trust my cousin and think most of the time he’s smarter than me so I met him in the middle of the struggle by downloading it for a listen on Audible. The Power of Now. I’m getting used to the author’s spiritually enlightened teacher voice. I’m only 3 chapters in but am becoming more “enlightened” with every ding of the bell in the audio….yes it dings. I’m not a New Age kind of chick, but I’ve also learned to eat the meat and spit out the bones with most personal growth literature. Maybe I’m being brainwashed, who knows. But the truth is we can all use a little car wash for our stinkin’ thinkin’ sometimes.
The cliff notes so far is that we all live in our heads. We are either super bummed about the past or anxious about the future. Can’t argue there. Gosh, what if we really could just enjoy the moment, the NOW.
Let’s talk about waiting.
We spend a ridiculous amount of time waiting: waiting in line, waiting in traffic, waiting in carpool line, waiting for the pizza to arrive, waiting for our kids to do their chores or our spouse to say something nice. Heck, we’re all waiting for Christmas to come right now. I could go on and on with this.
On a deeper level sometimes we’re waiting to have enough money, waiting for someone to change, love us better, take responsibility, do the right thing, love themselves or just someone to come along in general. If you really think about it, you can get depressed about the amount of time you spend waiting.
I had to ask myself, what if I just learned to enjoy the moment I was in, right now?
What if instead of growing impatient in traffic I just sat and felt really grateful that I had a car?
What if instead of waiting to see my son more often I was just grateful I have a son and that he’s healthy and in my life?
As you know from my last post, I tend to be impatient. I’m usually in my head about what’s next. Down to the simplicity of washing my hands to get to the next task. The other day I decided to be intentional about washing my hands. Sounds silly I know. But the water was warm and my hands were sudsy and I took a deep breath to appreciate that my fingers moved (most of them anyway). I paused to listen to the sound of the running water and watched the dirty suds go down the drain. I appreciated the soft absorbent towel that dried my hands. I didn’t wash my hands any faster or slower than usual. I was just intentional about being in the hand washing moment.
Sometimes when I get in my head about all the things that should have happened, I wish had happened or that I’m waiting for to happen I get mad, sad or upset.
The book author says NOW is the only real time that we have. It’s deep but true. The past is gone and we can’t change it. The future hasn’t come and there’s no guarantee it will.
What can I do NOW?
I can act when I have the power to and rest in gratitude when I do not.
Instead of waiting…
I would like to suggest that the antidote to waiting is living in the NOW.