Do you remember that joke on the internet? There’s a video of a man sitting at his computer, eyes bloodshot, looking frazzled, hair a mess, and finally a message comes booming out…” You have reached the end of the internet!”…. and the man then looks dumbfounded, he shrugs, and then walks away.
Funny, and yet, as nice as it sounds, it will never happen. The information is endless, more than anyone could ever possibly view, and so it is with many things in our lives. Our tasks are endless, washing dishes, laundry, yard work… caring for children, paperwork, house renovations, fixing broken things, staying in touch with people, exercising…ok, now I am wearing myself out. And it all seems to be too much at times.
We can work at a frantic pace, trying to get it all done, and with an intensity of what Tara Brach calls, ” the trance of 1,000 Serious Moves” . And it does feel like that when we are living in that pressure, believing that we must keep moving at this frantic pace or something important will be missed.
So how can we handle the stress that comes from so much to do and even from so much information that we feel we must keep up with?
Here’s one method that I have found helpful. It comes from the book, A Mindful Way through Depression. And it has a simple acronym to help us remember: A-B-C.
A. Awareness: Practice simple awareness of your internal and external cues. Check in with your body. What are you seeing, hearing, sensing, and thinking?
B. Breathing: Check in with your breathing. Often under stress our breathing becomes shallow. Take a few longer, slower breaths and focus on the steady, rhythmic in and out of your breath.
C. Choose: Then choose your next move with conscious awareness. Take the time to examine how your next option fits in with your values, then act with commitment.
You can’t do it all. And you certainly can’t do it all- at-once. So, let’s try letting go and not trying quite so hard, and maybe sitting back and enjoying the ride.
Doing my best to ……. Live Life On Purpose………………….Terri Mudge