Thought Tweak: Empty Your Time
This week's thought tweak came to me the other day when I was at my doctor’s office, waiting for the doctor during my monthly prenatal check-up. I had brought a magazine to read (since I know that I always have some waiting time), and of course I had my cell phone with me as well.
Thought Tweak of the Week:
Stop FILLING all of your time and EMPTY some time instead.
I’ve historically used this waiting time to cram in as much magazine reading or Instagram/Facebook/e-mail catch up as I possibly can; viewing it as wasted time if I’m not able to get in some of this “relaxing” reading during every last second.
During this last visit however, I decided to just sit there, close my eyes, and breath. I looked towards the window and felt the warm sun shining through on my face. I checked in with myself and felt my body relax as I took calm, deep breaths. I did a few small stretches and just enjoyed the empty space and time.
The wait wasn’t long: probably less than 5 minutes, but it was such a great way to re-ground myself and bring myself back into the present moment. It also felt like an eternity (in a good way!), because I never give myself that sort of empty time.
When we live such busy lives (as I know each of you does), and have such easy access to other people and information (ahem, smartphones), its so easy to get caught up in it all. We feel the need to constantly be filling any of our “free” time with something- even if its not very fruitful or enjoyable (like just skimming Facebook updates). It can even get so bad that we feel like we are wasting any time that we aren’t completely filling up! Have you ever been in line at a store and instead of just waiting, looking around at the people and taking in the whole scene, you’re whipping out your phone to check your e-mail and text a friend? Case in point right there. You’re probably in line for less than 2 minutes- do you REALLY need to make sure that every second is filled up??
Today’s always-on culture is causing us to have a seriously hard time being present in the moment and enjoying it, and that’s a huge problem! If we can’t just BE and LIVE in our current moment and be happy (even if its just for a little bit of each day), then we’re just fast-forwarding all of our moments away to get to the next thing, then the next…until we don’t have any more moments left to spare!
So here’s what I want you to do:
Find some time today that you know you normally fill up with unnecessary fluff, and instead, use that time to focus on the moment, yourself, and your surroundings. Look around at the other people in line, smile at them, and connect with a REAL human (instead of an Instagram photo of one).
Once you do this, let me know how it went and how it made you feel by sharing in the comments below! I bet that you’ll find that the time moves a little bit slower, you can breath a little deeper, and you feel a little lighter.
Here’s to getting back to LIVING life instead of just helping it quickly pass by!
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