Wednesday 22 November 2017

Mindful moment… Stop just 'getting through' and learn to live

It's easy to spend our days just trying to get through our waking hours
It's easy to spend our days just trying to get through our waking hours

Marianne Power

In her beautiful book, The Writing Life, Annie Dillard writes: "How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives." For many of us who spend hours, days, weeks and months answering emails, staring at computers, answering ringing phones, this is a terrifying thought. Is this really how I want to spend my life?

It's easy to spend our lives just trying to get through our waking hours - hours spent working, perhaps doing jobs we don't want to do - in order to get to the good bits: the weekend, the happy hour, the holiday. But that means that many of us are just trying to "get through" our lives rather than live them, enjoy them, feel them, soak them up. The answer is two-fold I guess: we either change how we spend our hours or we find a way to sink into each hour and enjoy it, no matter what we are doing.

We might be doing laundry but is there a way to do it that makes you feel like you are caring for loved ones - which is a good way to spend our lives. Our job might not be what we dreamt of doing but is there a way we can relish the challenges it brings, the contact with others? Sometimes we don't need to change what we do, we just need to change our attitude to what we are doing. Change the meaning we are giving to it.

* Marianne Power is the author of helpmeblog.net

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