suffering

Slowing down.

Slowing down.

March 12, 2020
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And slowly… it’s as if the world – my world yes, but also The world – is slowing down on account of COVID-19 aka the Coronavirus. And as weird as it might sound, I breathe out; a sigh of relief.

This does not mean that I am happy about the situation. Of course not. It will cause human suffering and deaths, and I hope we will be able to flatten the curve enough to give more people a chance to come through the ordeal that we are facing alive and well.

But I think there are many who, like me, can benefit from having to do a retake on life. For the past eight months I’ve been working much more away from home, at the offices of my clients, than in years prior. I’ve been struggling, not having as much time with myself as I’m used to. I am lucky that much of the work I do can be done from home, even though I’ve been doing a lot of it on client sites recently.

With the world slowing down anyway, I’ve taken the opportunity to look at my priorities, to look at what signals my calendar transmits. What of my top priorities are visible in my calendar, and what is not? Reflecting on what I want in life, and what I don’t want, realizing many things.

A lot of what I do want is there. I make room for it. But I’d want to make more room for it.

What I don’t want, is to a large extent not there. But prioritizing amongst my multiverse of assignments and projects and commitments makes it easier to ensure my calendar properly mirrors that order of priority.

This also means, that there are a few things present in my life without me necessarily wanting them to be. Prioritizing had me cancel a few upcoming trips (which, in view of the current pandemic, also is the most rational and responsible thing I can do); it also had me turn down an assignment that I would have said Yes to just a few days ago, has I not opened my own eyes to my responsibility to ensure my life is set up, as best I can, according to what is truly important to me, that which resides in my core.

No wonder I breathe a sigh of relief at having my world slow down, as it already had me gain clarity on life, on what’s important – truly important – and making sure there’s both room, energy and action to match that.

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Reverting to maker-mode

February 20, 2017
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It’s chaotic inside of me, as someone close is suffering. It affects me, as a lot of thoughts pop into my mind, about the fate and future of this one soul; what I can do, or not do; thought on a society that has let the rights of a few be more important than the needs of the many.

This makes me weary. Lacking in energy. It’s as if I’ve grown lackluster, myself. I am ever grateful that I’ve learned to be gentle towards myself, and to let myself be, in a situation as this, rather than push hard and beat myself up for not living up to the highest possible standards (mine, that is). Because I have a hard time to focus, truth me told.

click clackSo I retreat, after doing what I am capable of doing workwise, and then… I knit. With an unfinished sock in my hands, the gentle click clack of the knitting needles, and the tendency to get sore fingers from the slightly coarse organic wool/nettle-yarn, that I so love, my mind is free to simply be. No demands. No expectations. To be let off the hook of accomplishments and deadlines, I revert to maker-mode and rejuvenate. If it was warmer outside, I might be putting my hands into soil, cultivating my garden, but given a few degrees plus, rain and fog-filled grey days with gusts of wind that cut to the bone, I stay inside, my fingers find a similar sense of satisfaction in turning the yarn into a thing, a creation, something that can be used, providing warmth and beauty both.

I know. It will not last forever. Something will give, the situation will resolve itself, somehow – and I pray for it to turn out as best it can – and I will revert to my normal level of energy and accomplishment. In the meantime, I settle into the couch, throw a woolen blanket over my legs, and pick up the knitting needles, click clacking myself into peace of mind.

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That which is

August 29, 2016
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that which isThat which is, it is. No less. No more. Just, what is.

I can like it. Or not.
I can dislike it. Or not.
It doesn’t really matter, because it is.
How I respond to it, will cause me to suffer. Or not.

Is it really as simple as that?
Yes. It is.

But just because I know this, doesn’t always mean that I like it. However, the fact of the matter is, what I believe should be, that is not, is the cause of all my suffering. Not accepting the now, the here, the isness of the present moment.

So I sit here, letting it all flow through me. All the emotions. The highs. And the lows. Especially the lows. Oh, those lows. Letting go…. letting come. Not clinging to any one emotion, or thought. Not fighting them off either. They can come. But if the answer is No when I ask How does this serve me? – then I will gently show them the door, and resist the temptation (habit?) to hold on desperately to what should be, rather than what isn’t. To frenetically fend off that which is, when I want something else instead.

That which is, it is.
What I can do, is to call forth the best me I can, under the circumstances.

Closing one door, knowing that somewhere, a door is opening. Somewhere. It will come to me. When it is time.
Until then – letting go, letting come. Like a breath. Inhale. Exhale.

Knowing, owning, accepting, that what is, is. 

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