I’ve been thinking about this blog and what to do with it. In the quiet weeks posting a quote was the barest commitment I could make, and sometimes even that was a struggle. So I am experimenting with starting the week with a quote to frame the next few days (Monday), and a comment later in the week (Wednesday), to reflect on that. In the spirit of this exploration I’ve been thinking about the ‘Just for today’ quote I posted on Monday.
Just for today seems like an awful long time when you’re experiencing a lot of anxiety or anger! So, in my efforts to see progress rather than perfection in 2011, I’ve modified it to ‘Just for this moment, do not worry. Just for this moment, do not anger.’
Being as kind and compassionate as we possibly can to ourselves does mean moving into the moment far more than perhaps we might be used to. But if we can see, recognise and experience the moments of love, compassion and joy in our lives, and appreciate them no matter how fleeting they might be, then we are truly rich. Similarly, those moments of anger – when experienced fully in the moment – teach us where we are right now. Seeing and recognising our reactions is half the battle.
My dogs are great teachers. One of mine was pushing the boundaries today. I got annoyed and did yell out of frustration. But the frustration expressed had little to do with the dog’s behaviour at that particular moment ~ but I know that I could have approached the behaviour more calmly than I did. The frustration was borne out of wider problems, things from elsewhere that I’ve carried with me, and which were switched on at that moment when I ‘reacted’ rather than ‘acted’ upon what was going on ‘in the now’.
We carried on walking and a few minutes later they were walking perfectly by my side, and I mean perfectly ~ unseen/unheard of usually at that stage of a walk. At first I didn’t notice it, then it hit me. I praised them immediately and the rest of the walk was a complete pleasure. Yet if I’d carried on with the angry moment, or continued to berate myself for yelling when I wished I hadn’t, then I wouldn’t have seen, recognised and experienced what was happening in that very moment.
It may not seem to be the most profound experience, but the recognition of what I was doing in that moment was vital in making an important attitudinal shift; and the joy that comes from experiencing such simple recognitions and awareness is far more profound than any account of it can provide.