Modern Times

I do the regular things – breakfast, pills, and brush teeth and then I look at my daily calendar. It’s going to be a busy one with phone calls to make, bills to pay, lunch with a friend and some time in the gym. I should be working on my book… I should be doing some errands… I should… So I start my morning with meditation, reading from a spiritual book and affirmative prayer. That first 45 minutes is precious time and I know it will be helpful to every other activity in this day.

Even for a semi-retired person like myself, the days seem to fill up quickly. One thing I’ve learned is that if I spend some time on spiritual activities early in the morning, my whole day will go better. A few minutes reading one of my favorite authors will put me in touch with the Infinite and that will put my “to-do” list in perspective. A simple prayer claiming that my day goes well will grease the wheels of life. Meditation will slow me down, balance my mind and spirit and set me up to greet whatever comes my way with joy.

Time management seems to be a persistent personal challenge for many successful people. I sometimes wonder where all the time has gone. No one seems to have enough to go around. Yet, can we really call it success if we are exhausted at the end of the day? And what ever happened to fun?

We have so many labor saving devices that it seems as though we should have plenty of time but it hasn’t worked out that way for most people. Fear, ambition and habit combine to keep a lot of people on the run and this makes for a lot of anxiety which can translate as illness.

One of these days, I expect that I will hear someone say, ”I don’t care who stole my cheese but I want the one who stole my time to bring it back.” Or he may say, “I don’t want to swim with the sharks anymore, I just want to catch up on my email.”

The pitiful part of this story is how many of us work hard so we can retire and then fill up our retirement hours with volunteer activities. Is it habit or is simply that the world demands more of our time than we have to give?

I don’t have all the answers since I am very busy myself – teaching a class, writing a blog and a book while keeping up an active social life as well as making it to the gym on a regular basis. All of these things are wholesome activities and I do not want to give any of them up. On the other hand, how much is too much?

Part of the answer is to monitor our activities and keep control of our choices. A refresher course in assertiveness training might be a good idea for some of us who truly love to “please people.” For years, I helped women set boundaries and learn to say no when other people’s demands seemed to control their lives. I still do occasional classes and talks on the subject in Wise Women gatherings. My Wise Women don’t worry, Wise Women don’t sing the blues, book still sells.

Setting boundaries is important and the other important part of the answer is to have a regular spiritual practice. That quiet time we spend in meditation and prayer will slow down anxiety, clear up any negative emotions, and smooth out the day. It will help us establish a clear sense of priorities and goals. If we can’t do it all at once, we need to figure out what we want to do first.

In this busy world where we are hypnotized into thinking that the material world is the only reality, a 45 minute time period spent on spiritual matters can truly be the key to a better life. Just getting in touch with your deeper nature for a few minutes each day is renewing, rejuvenating and restful. It makes everything go better and it keeps you from feeling like an accidental leaf blowing in the wind of change.

Spiritual laws are True, Infinite, and unchangeable. They are the key to connection to a deeper truth about life itself.

 Ask yourself

What’s missing from my day?

How can I include the missing pieces?

Are there obvious time wasters I can cut?

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