Mindfulness Leads to More Time
When we allow ourselves to slow down, to notice the world around us and appreciate the beauty, we are baking in nourishment to our day. It takes no extra time to notice the threads of the shirt you're folding.
Mindfulness Leads to More Time
By Trisha Goodall
The other day I went to my favorite coffee shop. I hadn’t been in quite some time, but I ordered my coffee and the house special waffle. I sat and starting working. Cut to nearly three hours later, and I glanced to my left - stunned.
I was arrested by the beauty of a weaving that hung on the wall across the room. No name - a price, but how inadequate.
I remembered the wall of watercolor flowers that previously donned the back wall. I looked behind me - new art there as well.
A lack of mindfulness had blocked me
I was struck by how oblivious I’d been for the past 3 hours. It took me so long to recognize the beauty.
I wrote previously that I’ve been enjoying poetry, but I’ve also been experimenting with writing my own. Through Mary Oliver’s encouragement via her interview with Krista Tippet, I have been practicing “showing up for poetry”. On a regular occasion (not daily since I don’t put such unreasonable expectations on myself), I sit to write.
This day, I’d sat to write and had nothing. That is when I glanced around me and was startled. And then I wrote:
And yet, I didn’t notice for hours.
Beauty. Blends and inspires.
But we can’t be inspired if we never look.
The patterns, vibrant. Veiled.
As we walk along, invisible. Or so we pretend.
We move as if the world is invisible rather;
veiled behind our own thoughts.
Joy comes and we may say yes.
Even if last time we said no.
Thank you. To the yes.
And so I share this with you - not because I’m a brilliant poet (I am under no such illusions), but simply to remind you to notice. To pause. To savor.
Time is so hard to come by - our truly limited resource. There can always be more money and more opportunity. Everything changes. But the constant is that time does not return to us.
So, if you’re folding laundry, perhaps you can look deeper at the threads. Notice the pattern, and appreciate the craftsmanship. When changing a diaper, notice the chub, the folds of skin, what a wonder to behold!
Mindfulness can give us "more time"
It’s mindfulness that I’m really talking about. And we have all the opportunities - an abundance. Living mindfully helps us to feel the abundance of time. We slow down the moments - rather than rushing through. We think we can’t afford to slow down. But how much more nourishing can each moment be if we allow the delay?
A friend of mine once told me about her experimenting with taking melatonin at night to help her sleep. I asked how it was going and she said, “Good!...I mean, I get a lot less done. But I feel better.” Ah. yes. A lot less done.
Anxiety is likely to follow such a prospect. But guess what else happened? Nothing. The world didn’t crumble. Her house didn’t fall into disrepair. Her children didn’t suffer. She simply became...happier, well-rested.
Allow yourself to slow down. Allow yourself to “get less done.” Notice that lovely painting, the sculpture in the park. Meditate upon the flower in your yard. Honor yourself and the glorious world around you. This takes no more time.
You deserve it.