10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place (and Staying There) is a program to help us develop habits to grow a joyful spirit. Many of us sabotage our happiness by habits that we might not even be aware of. Identifying and changing these habits can build a reservoir of well-being to enhance our happy times and sustain us during challenging times.
Thursday, July 4, 2013
There Is No Try
Quit trying. Quit trying not to try. Quit quitting. ~zen saying
I was sitting on the bank of the creek by my cabin, close enough for the water to kiss my toes now and then, surprising me with a tickling burst of icy cold.
The creek is always rushing, tumbling, gurgling, frothing, full of noisy energy and motion. When I closed my eyes, I could hear the upstream water crashing towards me with my left ear, while my right ear listened separately to the water swooshing downstream just as quickly away from me.
Like time. On one side the future hurtles towards me and without pausing becomes the past, slipping by and out of reach so fast.
And yet, right in the middle of the cacophony in stereo, there was the tiniest of gaps, a hair thin opening, and when I listened there...silence. Elusive, ephemeral, coming in and out of my awareness when I tried too hard to focus. But when I relaxed, it was there – golden, still, unchanging, eternal.
That seems to be where I’m spending a lot of time these days, in that gap, at least when I’m not chasing my toddler grandson around while my daughter is at work. A nice juxtaposition – an almost two year old dynamo who stops in his tracks to immerse himself in the life of a passing ant or to see how many ways he can spray Nana with the sprinkler. He invites me into the gap where there is no time rushing by. There is only now and now is forever.
Do or do not. There is no try. ~Yoda
related posts: Falling into Now; Eternity in a Dew Drop
[So what’s happening with the blog? I took a break for the month of June because I felt called to spend more time in contemplation and less time with words. I have missed keeping up with my blogging buddies, but my soul has be grateful for this quiet time. So much so that I’m going to continue my informal personal retreat for another month, and maybe even two. I might post something here and there during this time, and I expect to resume a more regular blog schedule and to reconnect with all of you a little further down the road. In the meantime, I’m always available by email if you want to get in touch. email@example.com]
Posted by Galen Pearl at 10:49 AM
Labels: Step 10-Now, wait
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Wonderful - wonderful post and wonderful that you are on retreat. May you keep finding what you are looking for.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Dan. I like the way you phrased it--keep finding. Yes, I have found it and continue to do so. I appreciate your encouragement.Delete
I'll meet you in the gap! Lovely to see you here for a moment. I'm winding down and starting to take my time away too. But I couldn't resist saying hi to you and sending you all my love.ReplyDelete
Sandra, Yes, I'll meet you there, my friend! Thanks so much for stopping by as you begin your own retreat. Blessings to you.Delete
Galen, what a beautiful reflection this is and how much I've missed your writing, my friend! Coincidentally (or, maybe not), my post tomorrow features how my granddaughter made me so much more aware of what it means to live in the moment. Children do teach us so much when we stop to observe with open eyes and hearts.ReplyDelete
Love and blessings, and enjoy your rest and restoration! :)
Martha, I will stop by and read your post. I have read your whole trilogy now--what a wonderful set of books. I will save them to read to my grandchildren! Thanks so much for your support and encouragement.Delete
Good for you with your "bloggy break". Love that quote by YODA!!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Jo! Yes, Yoda is full of Jedi wisdom.Delete
Amazingly comforting post in the midst of the hustle and bustle of life, Galen. Good for you for taking time away from the blog for added contemplation and relaxation. I did that back in January for 2-3 months, and it was the best thing I could have done for myself.ReplyDelete
Sherrey, I'm been encouraged by hearing from others who have taken breaks with positive results. Thanks for commenting.Delete
It's good to have you back even for a bit. I enjoyed this post. That gap is a beautiful place, which you illustrated so wonderfully with your words. I'm trying to spend more time in that gap, too.ReplyDelete
I think our souls tells us what they need. I am glad yours has been helped by your blog break and I hope you will continue to find comfort in your contemplation. We'll welcome you back whenever you feel called to write!
Tina, Thanks for your kind words and encouragement. I'd love to hear more about your experience "in the gap" when you feel like sharing.Delete
Galen good for you to take some time away from the words, if we don't experience the here and now in life what words do we have to share? I too am thinking of a hiatus from my internet connections, only in the precontemplative stages of this thought as I want to immerse myself in another project I have started, I've always said someday and I feel that someday has approached and it's time. I'll see where I'm led to and take one step at a time.ReplyDelete
Do what you enjoy and enjoy what you do! Take care and see you well when I see you. :-)
darlin, You have been blogging so frequently (every day) for several years! I would be very curious to know how you come to a decision to take a break and what that would be like for you. Hope you will keep me in the loop. Thanks for commenting.Delete
What a beautiful reflection to come back to after a long time. Encouraging me to elevate my thoughts.ReplyDelete
Glad to have you in the loop again.
Thanks for the kind words, Susan. Blessings to you, too, and joy always.Delete
I read every line twice to take in the beauty of your words - I'm not sure you notice but there's a cadence to them that's so calming to me. I could see you taking your 'me' time and then have having the little man chase you around. The overall sense I got was of peace. Thank you for sharing yours with us, Galen. ♥ReplyDelete
Corinne, Thank you for your thoughtful reflection. I was not aware of a cadence, so thank you especially for pointing that out. I also appreciate knowing that the effect is peaceful. That is certainly how I'm feeling most of the time. Thanks so much for commenting.Delete
A lovely reflection, time, water, silence and a child an apt mix..ReplyDelete
Things are a little turbulent at the moment, but I look forward to the peace when all settles down.
B M, I thought I responded to this but I see I didn't. Sorry for the delay. I hope things are beginning to settle down for you now. The challenge, I think, is to find some peace, even for an instant, no matter what the circumstances. Easier said than done! Thanks for your comment.Delete
Isn't it wonderful to dip into that gap? I too find it far more often while I'm sharing life with my grandchildren....it's a place that once I reach it, it feels so wonderful! Seeing is life.ReplyDelete
Karen, I do have those gap moments with my grandchildren. However I seem to find it most quickly and easily when I'm in solitude, in nature somewhere or on my meditation cushion. It's all good. Thanks for commenting.Delete
It is interesting how many of my blogging friends are either taking a break or adjusting their involvement downward. To everything there is a season, and blogging is no different.ReplyDelete
I must admit, though, when I saw a fresh post from you today I became excited. I couldn't wait to read what you had written. You didn't disappoint...powerful and meaningful thoughts.
Bob, You are such a sweetie. Thank you for your kind words.Delete
Well, it certainly sounds like you've found your happy place, and I'm glad you're staying there a while longer. But I'm happy to hear from you now and then too. Enjoy, and come back soon! :)ReplyDelete
Jennifer, Thank you for your support and encouragement.Delete
I love the hair line opening into NOW. To be in that place is to glimpse at forever. Lovely post and I hope you enjoy every moment with grandson. This is a special time indeed!ReplyDelete
Margaret, Thanks so much. I do enjoy my time with him, and also my time alone!Delete
Just beautiful Galen. I'd like to stop in that gap a little longer. But the time I am there it simply refreshes my soul.ReplyDelete
elle, True, even a moment there is a respite for the soul. Thanks for commenting.Delete
You drew such a beautiful picture with your amazing thoughts today. They were very poetic in nature. I have missed your posts and I will look forward to you coming back. You always inspire me.ReplyDelete
I think it is awesome that you are taking a moment longer to just be. I may follow your course. I would for sure if I had a cabin with a creek running close by. I love this painted picture.
Thanks for your kind words, LeAnn. If you want a break, I'd be glad to show you the cabin anytime!Delete
Hi, Galen! ~ReplyDelete
Even your writing seems different. Very meaningful, and yet sort of cryptic or mysterious. I see by this that you're not just 'talking' about the gap -- you are truly residing there. Wonderful, wonderful! Wishing you well and thrilling vicariously in your adventures! XOXOXO
Linda, I so appreciate your reflection that does indeed describe how things seem to me right now. Thanks so much, and I'm happy to have you along vicariously or otherwise.Delete
I love the sense of peace emanating from this post. For the briefest of moments I think I fell into the 'gap'. But then it was gone. I will try not to try getting back there :) but knowing that it is there and is accessible any time is a nice feeling. Enjoy your break.
Keith, I'm so pleased that you fell in here with me! Loved your trying not to try--very funny. Thanks for the good wishes.Delete
Hi Galen pearl. I like your blog. Retreat yourself is necessary to energize yourself. It makes you younger and lively. Visit my blog.ReplyDelete
leo, I don't know if it makes me younger, but I probably am a bit livelier! Thanks for stopping by.Delete
Galen: Welcome back! Your post reminded me of something I always did in the classroom. I would gently throw a rubber ball to someone in the class while I was in the middle of a lecture. No one ever missed it. I then explained that they caught the ball because it came naturally. When we over-think things, we tend to get it wrong.ReplyDelete
JJ, I've said it before--your students are lucky! Great example of catching the ball. Nunchucku are a bit like that, too. You can't think about it too much or go slowly. You just have to set things in motion and go with it! Thanks for commenting.Delete
I love the Zen quote. It's amazing how many times we can say to ourselves "I'm going to quit______. Thanks for the post.ReplyDelete
Lisa, I know, I do that, too! Glad you liked it. It's a good reminder for all of us.Delete
Beautiful post! It is amazing how much energy a toddler can contain. The minutes we spend with them are priceless. I hope you enjoy your blog break.ReplyDelete
Bonnie, He's just like his mom. She was always on the go. Thanks for your good wishes.Delete
Wonderful post! I struggle with OCD and it is nice to be reminded to be present in life's small yet amazing moments. The description you gave of your time on the bank of the creek is such a great instance of being aware of your body and connected to your physical experiences. I often live so much in my own head I forget there is a huge, beautiful world out there. Thanks for reminding me. I look forward to more posts.ReplyDelete
Anna, I used to live almost exclusively in my head, so I understand that. It took a long time to bring my center into my heart and claim the rest of my body! So glad this post was helpful to you. Thanks for your comment.Delete
My apologies for getting to your post so late. You'll still be on your break and I hope it is going well.
The point you made about the hair thin opening and the silence really struck a chord with me. It reminded me of the silence between thoughts we have and has inspired me to dwell in this silence and when thoughts do arise, observe them, allow them to pass and experience the silence again.
Hiten, I like your connection between the hair thin opening I experienced at the creek and the gap between our thoughts. Great reminder. Thank you. And thanks for the good wishes. My break is going very well, thank you.Delete
Beautiful post! It is amazing how much energy a toddler can contain.ReplyDelete
So true! Thanks for commenting.Delete
Enjoyed reading your post here Galen and your thoughts on the gap. And missing your regular writing and thoughts of course!ReplyDelete
I too love the juxtaposition between the gap and the toddler! lol But it's interesting that you get to be fully present in both situations and circumstances.
Have you reached enlightenment:) !? Or maybe enlightenment is a moment by moment experience and you're just finding yourself in a lot of them:)
I took a small break as well and traveling in Asia. Hope you're well otherwise.
Vishnu, Welcome home! I've been following your trip. Have I reached enlightenment? Ha! We all have, I think. In fact, we've never been unenlightened. We just don't know it. We block our awareness of it. So, like many, I have occasional glimpses of knowing. Thanks for your comment. I look forward to your reflections on your trip.Delete
Love you insight. I strive to be in the moment- to find that small gap of time that is so precious.
I hope that on your break you find many still moments "in the gap" renewing your spirit. Your posts are missed but it is so understanding that need to take a break and renew. I have found that I need to do this on a regular basis.
Amy, Thank you for your comment and for the good wishes. Like you, I might find I need to do this on a more regular basis.Delete
The gap of timeReplyDelete
living the moment
Thats what i wish for too. between schedules and between hustles.
Goku, Yes, the in between spaces! Thanks for commenting.Delete
I've often heard that God is in the gap between our thoughts. That is one way to look at it I guess. Enjoy your time away. I do that periodically too. SandraReplyDelete
Sandra, I love that--God in our thought gaps. So good to hear from you.Delete
It's been a while and I have been wondering how you are doing. Glad to know that you are spending precious time living in the gap. All's well and happy there, I suppose.
Love and blessings,
Thanks, Evelyn, for stopping by. Yes, all is well here. Love and blessings to you, too.Delete