A song that is speaking to me these past few months is Let’s Be Still by The Head and the Heart. The lyrics, “the world’s just spinning a little too fast…if things don’t slow down soon, we may not last…the world’s not forgiving for everyone’s fears…the days turn into months and the months turn into years…so just for a moment lets be still.” Coming out of a frenetic time in my life, where my busyness ruled the day, I find myself hungry for space and moments of deep stillness that is a restorative balm for my soul.
My core values include dynamism, which pulls me toward the energy and intensity of experiencing new adventures, passionate work pursuits, and a strong bias toward action. When dynamism is paired with my core values of making a difference, connection, or self-actualization I can be like a moth to a flame, so attracted to the fire that I can’t feel my wings being scorched. The core values that light my path also cast a large shadow when disconnected from my larger vision and purpose.
These past few weeks, I decided to feed my hunger for stillness with regular inspirational readings, meditative moments, and quiet reflection time. Because I like to write, I dusted off my journal and gave myself the gift of meanderings and empty pages. Even in stillness, the pull is strong to create an action plan, and I feel the seductiveness of dynamism in these quiet moments. My awareness builds, and I notice how often I fill my minutes with multitasking to feed my adrenaline junkie. A few days later a new epiphany emerges, shining a bright light on my tendency to push myself to an exhausted place, perhaps avoiding time and space for introspection. Escapism practiced brilliantly to avoid examining the fear that lives just below the surface of my consciousness. The fear that the days turn into months, and the months turn into years. The fear that I might be forced to face, all those haunting questions about the meaning of life…the meaning of my life. There are times like now that I will be consistent in my reflective practice, allowing myself 30-45 minutes each day. Eventually, I will again find myself less consistent as a different life pattern emerges.
There is a season, a Cycle of Transformation, that is patterned for growth and renewal. The Spring represents new seedlings, the Summer is for growth and maturing, in Autumn the falling away of what no longer serves, and Winter is a time to go inside and anticipate the coming Spring. Knowing that this cycle exists supports me in my life and in my work. When I hear the calling to go inside and reflect, I do so without judgement, making time to be still, to listen and connect, and to consider what’s next. This practice creates renewal, and supports me to live my values, envision my future, and stay on purpose. If you feel disconnected, frenzied, or a hunger for stillness, I invite you to try my approach or create one that is right for you.
What works best for me is to find time in the morning. Sometimes, I light a candle or add essential oils to a diffuser (my favorite is lavender and orange). It signifies that the moment is sacred.
- First, I find inspiration by reading (or listening to an audible) for 15-20 minutes. A book on tape gives me some consistency in a topic area.
- Next, I spend 5-10 minutes clearing my mind (meditation, prayer, or offering gratitude based on your preferences).
- Finally, a few minutes to journal about whatever is on my mind.
Even if you are somewhat skeptical, take this approach out for a test drive. In two weeks, with consistency, you will gain new insight and be amazed by what you discover!
Deb Siverson is an author and president of Xponents, Inc. Her book, “The Cycle of Transformation: Igniting Organizational Change through the Leader Coach”, encourages transparent and emotionally-connected conversations at work. Her company’s focus is to bring out the best in people by recognizing the unique talent, values, and purpose inherent in all