Busy, Busy, Busy. Sometimes we feel we are all over the place going in several directions simultaneously. A key element as we attempt to go from frazzled to focused is finding one’s breath and using it to full advantage as we each find within us, a place of stillness. It is possible with practice.
It seems we are hungry for “time out to disconnect” in order to feel a sense of peace in the crazy fast paced world. This kind of time for stillness allows space for creativity and recharging of our batteries.
Frazzled folks are low on energy and high on unhealthy stress. When frazzled, we tend to neglect our health by eating unhealthful food, sleep poorly (or not enough), abandon our exercise routine, or avoid making time to calm our minds. By doing any or all of these things, we deplete our energy and impair our ability to focus. We don’t think clearly and the thoughts we do have race through our brains without time or space for reflection. This adds to the frazzle. And, rather than focusing on the positive we are drawn to the negative. When frazzled, it’s easy to overlook what we have to be grateful for, and that contributes to a downward spiral where we review that which is NOT good, NOT done, NOT positive.
We need to breathe.
Life’s events present us with series of choices. It is up to us to decide how we will respond. It is our attitude, not the event that determines whether we will be frazzled or focused. Truth is, whatever happens, we need to adapt. Change is a constant in life. It is up to us to figure out how we are going to deal with it. Do we waste precious time and energy bemoaning that which we cannot change? Or do we figure out a way to deal, integrate, and move on? We can learn to see change and obstacles as challenges and allow the feelings we have related to them, whether disappointment, anger, or frustration, to be part of the process of dealing with the situation in a way that does not diminish our ability to function well. When our impulse is to hurry, the better choice may be to slow down so we can actually give ourselves a chance to pay attention to what is happening within and chose how we respond rather than have a knee jerk reaction that in the end may hurt us. For example, instead of eating quickly, we can consciously eat slowly and be mindful of our pace and the sensation of eating. Although simple, it helps us to “right” ourselves when we have been knocked off our center.
When we take a few minutes (start with 3! ) to be still and breathe deeply, we can quiet our minds particularly with regard to the “chatter” in our heads, We have multiple, busy schedules, interruptions and distractions — we all know what they are — but when we can be still and quiet for a moment here and there, we feel more control over our lives. This leads to a recognition that we have the power to change our lives in a positive way, one step at a time. The good news is that small changes have big effects.
Prioritizing helps. But even the BEST prioritizer experiences life invariably getting in the way. Each of us will have to drop some things and pick them up at a later time, if you can. Think of yourself as a juggler; some balls stay in the air and some drop to the ground. If you focus on the balls that dropped to the floor instead of what you are still juggling, you will be frazzled and unfocused. AND instead of feeling a sense of accomplishment about doing what you Did, you will feel awful about what you did not do. Appreciate that some things on your “to do list” will have to be put away, for a day, a week, for now, or forever. Only you can tell.
Some of us fool ourselves into believing that we can do several tasks simultaneously and each is done equally well. That is just not true. If you multi-task, at least have realistic expectations. The brain cannot do more than one thing at a time WELL because we fully focus on only one thing at a time. Something suffers. We can try to do one thing at a time .. and do it well. We can simplify, wherever and whenever we can as a positive attempt to reduce the frazzle.
Whether we are talking about love, work, home, conflicting or competing responsibilities, this works! It also spills over to other areas of our lives which is really great! We can feel calmer, healthier, happier, more fulfilled, less worried, more spiritually connected, and more content with our lives and those in it. Not a bad result from just taking a breath.