Forgetting Ourselves

I recently was driving and had many people cut me off and beep at me out of what seemed to be frustration. Most of the time when this happens, I look down to my mileage meter to find out what speed I am driving at. The majority of the time, I am driving on the speed limit and sometimes a little over the speed limit. As I drove hearing honking and looking at the angry faces that people had on, I started to think about how rushed of a society we are. The majority of us move so fast throughout our day, we forget to take care of ourselves.

It is our social conditioning that teaches us that we constantly need to be busy all the time. We are a society that moves without even knowing that we are moving at all. Many drivers now move so quickly that they choose to make illegal and dangerous turns to get to their destination faster, placing other people in danger. I will admit I have done this at some point in my driving years which actually resulted in an accident. I was so focussed on getting to my destination that I was unfocussed of what was presently there in front of me on the road. What I have realized is that today we are moving in a much faster pace than prior years. Our schedule is so jam packed with appointments and "to do" lists that we forget to take a deep breath during the day and enjoy what we are doing and where we are. The majority of us really don't know how to slow down, we only focus on DOING.

I have been asked several times like many people,  "what are you doing this weekend" or "do you have plans this weekend?"  We feel like we always need to fill our days with events and things to do and if we don't, we don't know what to do with ourselves. If we have no plans and have spare time on our hands, we don't know how to handle the stillness and quietness of the moment. We feel we are not being "productive" if we don't do anything. Sometimes I fall into this mindset as well. However, what I have learned and am continuing to learn, is the importance and benefits of doing absolutely nothing.  I have learned that having days where there are no "TO DO's" are actually gifts to your mind, body and spirit. Our bodies are craving to slow down and relax. Being able to have quiet time for yourself is one of the most important things for ones well being. That quiet time can look different for everyone. It can be taking time alone reading a book, taking a bubble bath each week, having a spa day or taking a walk in nature or whatever resonates with you. Setting an allotted time each week for yourself  to slow down your breath and your body is a gift to yourself and others. This time allows your body to reenergize and allows your mind to take a rest from constant activity. Taking a couple minutes each day to stop and breath deeply is also very helpful. This can be very hard for some people to do because many people don't know how to just BE. Many people don't know how to be without their electronics and how to be alone with themselves.  There is always time but you need to make the effort to make even the slightest time during the week and/or during your day to rejuvenate yourself.

Many people don't prioritize themselves and constantly give to others without giving to themselves. They run out of fuel and eventually become sick, burnt out or even resentful. Somehow we have been taught that this is ok and is actually humbling. Giving out energy without giving yourself the energy you need to rejuvenate is far from humbling, it is a form of disrespect to oneself. Taking time for yourself on a consistent basis is not selfish, it is selfless because you serve yourself and others. It may feel selfish at first, but as you continue to give to yourself, it will feel less selfish. Starting something different will always feel uncomfortable at first until you get used to it. We are meant to feel energized, happy and balanced. If we don't give ourselves what our body and mind needs, no one will give it to us. We need to be the ones who care about ourselves the most.