Relax and be at peace

Nothing important ever comes to you because you feel desperate to get it.
Go to peace first.
Everything you long for will meet you there.
Martha Beck*

When I read this message a few days ago, I realized that I had been doing a lot of either-or thinking and neither option was pleasing to me. One solution would make me too tired. The other wouldn’t provide enough money. Other options didn’t seem to fit my needs and wants. What to do?

I worried. I stressed. My blood pressure went up. Headaches prevailed. You know the routine. We’ve all been there.

Reading this quote caused my brain to shift gears. “I know that. Why haven’t I gone to peace before this? Blaming myself for what I had not done was useless. In fact, it added more stress to the situation. I must try a calmer way to reach a decision.

I  took a few deep breaths and sat quietly for a while until my racing heart became still. Then I whispered, “I choose to be at peace with this situation. The answer will come at the proper time. The situation will resolve itself for my highest good. Thank you.” Then I went about my business.

So far, I don’t have a decision, but a few ideas are edging into my awareness and suggesting I do some basic research. Best of all, I’m not stressing. I know that a solution will present itself at the appropriate time.

Spirit, I thank you for bringing this message when I needed it most. I’m grateful that your quiet assurance is available to each of us. All we have to do is ask. And, so it is.

  • Martha Beck’s Compass Points, April 5, 2018

Sharon Dillon, April 17, 2018

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We can use fear for good

Thoughts to Ponder

January 31, 2017

“Fear is faith that it won’t work out.”

Sister Mary Tricky*

 “…the only thing we have to fear is fear itself….”

Franklin D. Roosevelt**

 

Recently I wrote about life being stressful and the need to find relief by finding ways to relax and laugh. Since then I have become aware that stress is often a disguise for fear.

Fear tends to be sneaky and finds many ways to insert itself into our lives. One way it manifests in my life is that I say that I don’t like roller coasters because they upset my stomach.  What I really mean is that I am afraid I’ll vomit and humiliate myself. Gosh, so that’s why thrill rides are often called vomit comets. I also say I’m afraid that I’ll drop my cell phone, knowing that it would shatter into many pieces. What I really fear is that I will fall out and my body will shatter into pieces. That’s an unlikely scenario, but it is real to me.

Many people face their fear by riding the coaster and enjoying the adrenaline rush. Their anticipation of the rush is stronger than their fear. Think I’ll ever get there? Nah! Besides, my cardiologist would get mad at me.

I recall hearing that anger is the face of fear and know that is true. I’ve seen this happen in my life and I see it happening in the world around me. Some people face their fear by protesting. Others yell at the television. Still others have health failures because their bodies can’t handle the stress.

This became all too real to me recently. A couple weeks ago I had a scary dream that caused my body to tremor for several hours until I spoke with a trusted advisor. That person led me in a meditation that showed me I was fighting Fear with a capitol F that is a part of me. I have to accept that, but I don’t have to live by Fear’s rules. That exercise lowered Fear’s impact to a lower case f on an important portion of my life and gave me freedom to try certain things that I’d been delaying for fear of failure.

However, over the past several days I’d noticed that my body was rebelling, a pain here, an ache there, and so on. I tried relaxation and physical exercise to no avail. Finally, I felt prompted to calm myself and just let my thoughts guide me. Those thoughts reminded me that this fear had a different cause and that sometimes it gives us pain to keep us stuck in a dark personal space, that place where fear controls us.

Then my thoughts (guides) gave me the realization that I have a platform for sharing this information and that I should use it because many others besides me are living in the same fear. They think it their bodies are failing, but they aren’t. Their bodies are simply holding the fear that is preventing us from moving forward. They think they are angry, but they are afraid their world is crumbling around them. We can’t stop those people whose actions distress us from doing what they are determined to do, but we can lessen their impact by not concentrating on the “what if” aspect of what we see.

I’m not going to be ingenuous and say that I no longer have fear. I don’t want to be fear-free. After all, fear is what keeps me from stepping in front of a fast moving vehicle. Instead, I asked fear to take its proper place in my life, keeping me safe when necessary while allowing me to move forward in other areas, such as writing this short essay.

For those who aren’t sure that angels/guides can teach us:

“The answers will always be discovered when we connect to Mother Earth.”

A Window of Wisdom***

We do this by sitting on the ground and feeling the Earth’s energy. If we’re not as agile as we used to be, we can sit outside in a lawn chair with our bare feet touching the ground. As we relax, we can feel our stress drain into the soil. If we leave our feet there a bit longer, we can feel regenerating energy flowing back up our feet and legs.

Spirit,

Thank you for giving us the gift of fear and showing us how we can use it for our protection without allowing it to dominate our lives and prevent us from doing the job we are on Earth to do. Thank you for making us aware that we can use fear for reasonable protection rather than a barrier to prevent us from being who we are meant to be.

 And, so it is.

* Andrews, Robert, The New Penguin Dictionary of Modern Quotations, page 480. Inaugural Address, March 4, 1933 (also used in other FDR addresses and by other world leaders)

**Warner, Carolyn, Treasury of Women’s Quotations, page 114, Prentiss Hall

***Window 1397-Step Outside, https://awindowofwisdom.wordpress.com/2017/01/30/windo-1397-step-outside/

Sharon D. Dillon, energywriter@cox.net, http://energywriter.me

Chesapeake Bay Writers, Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop, Southern Humorists, National Society of Newspaper Columnists

Author of Echoes of Your Choices, a motivational book, and one of 14 stories in The Book of Mom: Reflections of Motherhood with Love, Hope and Faith, published by booksyoucantrust.com. Available in print and e-format at Amazon.com

Not enough time?

Thoughts to Ponder – November 11, 2015

“One of the most essential tasks for living a life of purpose and joy is to command your time, rather than let it command you.”

Martha Beck*

 Martha said it so well. In this age of doing more with less and over-scheduling ourselves with work, family and community demands we tend to live by the clock. As a result we feel constantly pressed for time. We feel there is just not enough time in the day to do what we want to do. And, if you’re like me, you’re thinking “Where did 2015 go? It’s almost Christmas. Did we even have a summer?” It seems that every year gets shorter. Or, is that my imagination?

Today is a day of reflection on the sacrifices our veterans and their families have made for each of us. We need to take some time to thank those we can and reflect on the contributions of those who have gone before. Regrettably, many of us look at the calendar and say, “Today is Veteran’s Day. That means the banks are closed. Darn, I should have gone yesterday,” making this day just another time issue.

Remember the old saying, “Take time to smell the roses.” As trite as it has become, those words hold a lot of truth. While we must give adequate time and energy to our jobs and commitments, we can do a lot more rose smelling.

We can take a moment to listen to what our child is telling us. We can take a moment to listen to the birds sing or watch a leaf float to the ground. We can take a moment to deeply enjoy that first sip of coffee, inhale the aroma, feel the warmth on our lips, hold the taste on our tongues, experience the warmth spreading throughout our bodies and notice the alertness coming to our eyes and ears.

Do we envy the person who is over-worked? Do we envy the person whose stress level is 15 minutes short of a stroke or heart attack? Of course not. We envy the people who command their time, finding moments to regenerate their lives and their souls.

Each of us can take a moment to be grateful for our own existence and the people in them. We can be grateful that we have events in our lives that make us think we are too busy to take a moment to express that gratitude. A quick “Thank you” tossed out in the midst of our busy-ness will reach its target and be acknowledged.

Spirit,

Thank you for this new day. Show me how to use each moment wisely. I choose to be the highest and best I can be this day.

And, so it is.

* Daily Inspiration, Martha Beck, November 11, 2015 info@marthabeck.com

© by Sharon D. Dillon, November 11, 2015

Sharon D. Dillon, energywriter@cox.net, http://energywriter.me “Laugh your way to peace, love and joy”

Chesapeake Bay Writers, Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop, Southern Humorists, National Society of Newspaper Columnists

Author of “Twins! Oh no!,” one of 14 stories in The Book of Mom: Reflections of Motherhood with Love, Hope and Faith, published by booksyoucantrust.com. Available in print and e-format at Amazon.com.

Nine minutes a day

Thoughts to Ponder – October 2, 2015

“Procrastination always delivers stress and disappointment…

so what are you waiting for…

do it now.”

Window of Wisdom*

 

Life goes in cycles. Sometimes I’m focused on writing, then on housework and other times on yard work. Right now my focus is on the many inches of rain saturating this area, creating flood zones and leaving our trees and homes vulnerable to the forces of Hurricane Joaquin that will be arriving in the next couple days. My question is how do we keep up with all our activities at once?

Some people seem to be able to juggle many balls at once. I struggle to keep one in the air at any given time. I have a million excuses for procrastinating. I’m —

tired after working all day,

choosing to spend time with the great-grandsons,

wanting to write or finish a project,

and so on.

The list is endless. As a result I tend to feel like I’m not accomplishing anything important, like blogging on a regular basis.

Last year I had some health issues, nothing terrible, mostly annoying, but I just didn’t feel up to home tasks. Work took all my energy. Now my health is good again, yet I was feeling overwhelmed by all that needed done. Recently I traveled to Niagara Falls and surrounding area with Road Scholar. The trip was fantastic. When I arrived home with a huge pile of paperwork, souvenirs and dirty laundry to add to the rest of the piles, my mind switched gears. I must organize. Now.

I spent part of one day just getting the vacation mess in order. The next day I spent several hours sorting my writing cabinet by “Things I’ve written,” “Quotes and ideas,” and “How to.” I had been tossing everything into any drawer just to get it off my work table. After that I was able to slow down a bit. Now I’m focusing on one small task at a time.

A few years ago a wise woman told me to tackle tasks in nine minute increments. She said nine minutes is enough to sort one drawer. Nine minutes each day would get my house organized in no time. That works for most things, but not my writing cabinet. But, once I managed that task, I’ve been able to tackle one small task at a time. Yesterday, I picked up a small pile that had been hiding in a corner and found it to be last year’s Christmas cards. Less than nine minutes took care of sorting them into cards to toss and cards from loved ones to keep.

Much of my time yesterday was spent moving plants and other items into my house and shed to protect them from the weather, shopping for nylon cord, water and batteries and tying down large items. Even with that huge task and working a short shift, I was able to sort the Christmas cards. My friend was right. Nine minutes was enough to take another step toward my end goal of having an organized home and to feel good that I accomplished something useful.

I still have a lot of small piles. Most of what’s in them can probably be filed in the recycling bin. Now I know they are manageable. Nine minutes a day really does save the stress level.

Spirit,

Thank you for showing me that I can accomplish more than I thought in just a few minutes a day. I still have much to sort and other tasks to tackle, yet it now seems manageable. Also, I ask that you protect all areas potentially affected by this storm. I know that fear draws disaster, so I ask that you ease the fears of all who are located in the storm’s path. Please show everyone what steps to take to prepare or evacuate as needed.

And, so it is.

* “A Window of Wisdom, #907, September 27, 2015

© by Sharon D. Dillon, October 2, 2015

Sharon D. Dillon, energywriter@cox.net, http://energywriter.me “Laugh your way to peace, love and joy”

Chesapeake Bay Writers, Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop, Southern Humorists, National Society of Newspaper Columnists

Author of “Twins! Oh no!,” one of 14 stories in The Book of Mom: Reflections of Motherhood with Love, Hope and Faith, published by booksyoucantrust.com. Available in print and e-format at Amazon.com.