The Boy, The Old Man And The Donkey…

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A simple story today…

 

Once upon a time an old man, a boy and a donkey were going to town.

The boy rode on the donkey and the old man walked alongside.

They were chatting and enjoying the day.

As they went along they passed some people who remarked loudly that it was a shame that the old man was walking and the boy was riding.

The man and boy thought maybe the critics were right, so they changed positions.

A little later they passed another group of people who observed ‘What a shame, he makes that little boy walk!’

So the old man and the boy then decided they’d both walk. Continue reading

Challenge: Do Three Nice Things For Yourself…Easy Huh?

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How many of you were led to believe that it is selfish to put your own needs above others?

 

That it is wrong to put yourself first?

 

 

One way to tell is to ask yourself a couple of questions:

“Do I feel guilty when I take time for myself?”

“Does it feel okay to spend money on myself or do I do a mental checklist (But Henry’s been asking for a new jacket and Amy really wants a new ipod…) and then talk my way out of it?”

“When was the last time I treated myself to something frivolous or extravagant that was just for me..?”

 

 

Women in particular are really good at believing that focussing on ourselves is selfish.

Often we are brought up to believe that our role is to take care of the people around us – that it is compulsory, a fundamental part of our role in life as nurturers. Continue reading

Don’t Just Sit There….

 

 

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I was born an Energiser Bunny.

 

You know the ad for Eveready batteries where the toy bunny keeps on going and going…….and going…??

 

It’s hardly surprising.

My Mum and Dad are Energiser Bunnies too.

They are over 70 and they literally run- all day everyday.

 

I get exhausted just watching them….

 

 

Our family mantra was:

 

“Don’t just sit there- do something!”

 

 

Even “relaxing” always involved something active, something physical or something productive.

 

But I’ve stopped.

Still.

 

I didn’t run out of charge this time.

I simply made a decision to take out my batteries.

To lay them aside and just sit.

 

I decided to go all Buddha and find a new mantra:

 

 

“Don’t just do something- sit there!”

 

 

It’s taken me a while.

 

And lots of practice.

 

But I’ve stopped.

 

Now, where possible, I measure each step.

 

I choose what I do.

 

I do one thing at a time.

 

They call it mindfulness.

 

 

I went walking the other day with a friend.

 

She left me behind.

 

She was bouncing with energy to stride up the path- the same path she takes most days up past a beautiful mountain stream surrounded by trees.

It was stunning.

 

I kept stopping.

 

“Look at those autumn leaves!”

 

“Oh listen to that! What is that bird?”

 

“How clear is that water? Look at those pebbles…”

 

“What kind of plant is this one?”

 

“Feel these red seeds- they’re so smooth!”

 

I stopped to take photos- lots of photos.

Not all of them with a camera…..

 

My friend sighed in exasperation. She was here to walk godammit! She complained that walking with me was like doing a ‘vipassana walk ’ – a meditation walk.

 

 

Hmmm, I’m happy to own that….

 

 

She couldn’t believe that I could dawdle and call it walking.

 

I couldn’t believe she could walk the same path each day and not see any of it….

 

 

The world is full of Energiser Bunnies, all rushing through life in a frenzy of “busy”.

 

What is the hurry do you think?

 

Where is it they are going?

 

And how they will know when they’ve got there….

 

 

I wonder how many will ever take a moment to ask themselves these questions….

 

 

 

As for me, I know there are going to be times when I’ll need my fast shoes on….

But generally, I’m happy to ‘vipassana walk’ my way through life from now on and when someone looks at me sideways and comments on my lack of “doing” – I’ll take it as a compliment!

 

And when I’m not “doing,” I’m happy to just sit… :)