Yes, my suggestion for you in the next coming weeks is to have some space, some free time. I realise that it is probably the busiest time of the year. And you may be thinking, “Well it’s ok for you, you are travelling, you don’t have to commute to work, slog in a 9 to 5+ job and then get home to sort out the children” or whatever takes all your time up. And if you are thinking that, you are right. I don’t….now. I used to. I remember it well.
Often when we step out of situations and have some space, we can see objectively and understanding what is required. A bit like the wise old ladies of the village, where people would seek their wisdom. Haha, is that what I am turning into?
Yesterday we went on a Sketching Session in the middle of Company’s Garden, a beautiful area right in the heart of Cape Town. We met Rhuben, who was running the experience and in a short time, Hermani and Natasha arrived, friends who work together in Dubai. Interestingly, the very first words that Hermani said was “I can’t sketch”. More on that later.
Rhuben gave us each a postcard and he had written a different quote on each of them. Mine was by Edgar Degas:
“Drawing is not what one sees but what one can make others see”
Sorry, I digress, We are talking about to have some SPACE.
After our first exercise of doodling, we went to a place in the park surrounded by trees and sat on a bench. Rhuben gave us time to tap into our senses, what could we hear, what are we seeing, and how did we feel, and then draw a sketch to represent this.
I immediately noticed the sun beaming down through the needles of a pine tree giving dappled shade, the sound of birds singing and a slight breeze in the air. I felt at peace, and as I sat, I saw that the needles all faced the sun as if they were giving thanks.
Tim noticed the rubbish on the ground which jarred him. He symbolised these as black shapes, a compelling interpretation.
Hermani did a fantastic sketch of the bottom of a tree, looking at the detail of the bark and the root system, she said that it was like meditating, I sensed she was at one with the tree. As for “I can’t sketch” we all pulled her leg and told her that she could dump that belief now! I think she did.
Natasha noticed the noise of the construction site which grated her, the sound of the birds, and felt calmer as she turned to be amongst nature. Her sketch was a fabulous representation of her experience. What was significant for her was that she realised she never gave herself permission to have some space in her life, this was the first time for ages where she just stopped and metaphorically smelt the roses.
This experience for these young ladies was so much more than sketching, they saw the benefits to have some space, stopping being busy fools. I could see the tension in their faces literally melt, they seemed more at peace and at the end of our short time together, said that this sketching experience was profound, even life-changing.
From my own personal experience, since I have stopped the busy-ness of life, ended having lists. I get more done effortlessly. And it’s because there is less on my mind. As I said early, this seems counter-intuitive. But if you want to be more effective, give yourself permission to have some time out, have some space, even just focus on one thing. Try it for the next few days and see the consequence. Let me know how you get on.
If you are feeling tense with all the stuff you have to do, that tension is your very own inbuilt wisdom-system telling you to slow down and give yourself some breathing space. With less on your mind, less energy being used up juggling the thoughts flying around in your head, which is exhausting, you will find that you have more power to get things done efficiently. I know, sounds weird, but it works.
What is this obsession to always be busy anyway? Is it our ego saying if we are busy we must be important? Needed?
And as a coaching friend Ankush wrote recently:
“Slowing things down to ONE thing can bring remarkable clarity to our lives.”
Wise words, very wise words indeed.
Hi, I am Lindsey Reed. I love connecting with people and helping them to remember who they really are, their true selves and re-ignite their lives with confidence. Currently travelling around the world, I am still coaching, the wonders of technology. If you would like to connect with me, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
My book Got It: The Answer to a Confident, Productive & Stress-Free Life is available from Amazon in paperback and Kindle/ebook format and is now in over 23 countries. It describes how we create our experience of our own reality called life and through this understanding, we can have a more confident and freeing life.