At my mother’s yoga studio she begins each of her classes the same way…by asking her students to leave their day at the door and to be present in their practice. On occasion she tells her yogis to walk to the front of their mats and root their feet into Earth. And with their hands stretched down by their sides…she commands in her best Debbie Allen circa Fame voice “this is your mountain pose, set an intention for your practice today, and remember to be present”.
Being present my dear Polinistas is easier said than done!
Although it’s summer, the season of “relaxation and reflection”, I’ve found myself more stressed out than ever– with reports to write, blogs to post, meetings to attend, strategies to create… Most days I find myself spinning like Andy (Anne Hathaway) in the Devil Wears Prada (DWP). You know the scene where she is running through the street with a tray of coffees, a dog, Hermès scarves, Calvin Klein Skirts etc. She’s a mess—a bundle of nerves every time her cell rang. In my DWP moments I try and conjure my mother’s voice, and urge myself to “be present”.
Is there anything we can all do in these moments of sheer panic? No, not really…except breathe.
I can’t tell you how many times taking multiple deep breaths has stopped me from going stark raving mad. It’s my Calgon moment. Sure a bubble bath at those high stress moments would be better, but unfortunately I don’t think my cubicle could hold one… and my desk *wink*– not to mention the stares it would foster from boss and cubemates! No, all we can do when we feel like the walls are closing in is to stop, close our eyes, and take a deep breath.
I swear multi-tasking is going to be the death of us all…if we let it!
Most of my stress comes from trying to do everything all at once. Unless I clone myself there is no way that doing EVERYTHING at once is going to produce my best work. I would much rather slow down and be great at one thing at a time…then move at maximum pace and be mediocre at everything all at once.
Being present in each task and each moment is all that we can ask of ourselves and all we can expect from others. So, in order for us to avoid frequent DWP moments and run from our offices and homes screaming– take a moment to be present, set your intention for each day, and remember to breathe!
More inspiration to get over the hump!
Gotta Get Up by Jill Scott