Have you ever had the experience where you can’t turn your mind off and struggle with being still? I learnt the importance of stillness the hard way.
Eighteen months ago, I found myself feeling useless, mentally deficit because I couldn’t fulfil all the things on my to do list. I could not understand what was wrong with me. I had been working full time all my working career, managed challenging management roles, was primary carer for my aging mother, raised two children into teens. I could not understand what was wrong with me. I had an overwhelming sense of dread, I couldn’t breathe. I felt I was standing beside a black hole that if it sucked me down, I wouldn’t be able to get back out of. I later understood I was having my first panic attack.
The reality is that we’re conditioned to associate stillness with inactivity, and inactivity with failure. We’re trained to be overworked and to believe that if, at any point, we aren’t doing something that contributes to our goals, we’re not doing anything of importance.
We are so invested as a human doing rather than a being human. One of the most transformational things I’ve ever done is I’ve learned to be still. It’s the art of being in the moment, quieting your mind and simply being.
Many of you may be sitting there wondering how you even start this process others of you need to be convinced. The bigger question is how do you get started?
Before we get there, let me first share why this is important to me. By being still it really allows me to maintain my perspective. Rather than being reactive and not focusing on the thousands of thoughts in my head I can focus on being in the moment and being clear on who I am.
LET ME OFFER YOU A FEW SUGGESTIONS ON HOW TO BEGIN PRACTICING STILLNESS IN YOUR JOURNEY:
Schedule a time first thing in the morning
Find a place that you can go to that is uninterrupted
Allocate a set time that can be spent
Relax you body by putting on soft music
Quieten your mind, allow thoughts to come in, remain non-judgemental about them, and let them go
Repeat this process, respect the process to allow yourself to remain in control, empowered.
If you prefer, click on the link for a 15 mins guided meditation to introduce yourself to stillness.
I enjoy busy days and the settled feeling of knowing my tasks are done, the shopping done, the dishes are clean, and dinner is cooked, but I now like those things because they paved the way for me to just be.
The most important thing to do is prioritise you. The busier you are the more important this is. It makes us unable to just be with ourselves – our purpose only legitimate if its serving someone or something else. If you miss a day and get caught up in a wave of anxiety or fear of what I should be doing, whether or not I’m just lazy or inept or lifeless, be kind to self and start again tomorrow.