Follow Chronicles on Facebook

Friday, November 25, 2011

madrap bliss: simple things that make me happy

blowing bubbles, including bubbles in the bath
jumping in big rain puddles (only when in warm Zululand rain)
a perfect cup of tea made by a friend

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

so fast

Do you also find yourself saying, “life is going by so fast, I wish I could slow it down!”? Finding yourself in life’s rat race where days, weeks, months or even years might pass by before we take the time to raise our heads above the scrum and evaluate where we are now and where we’re going.

In the two weeks just past I decided to eliminate all that stuff that was causing me to rush through life and be ‘bogged down’. I went on one big fast! I fasted from food (even tea!), sport, social events and I traded it with reading, walking and praying. Being the first time having ever done something like this I had no idea what to expect, all I had was the certainty to do it. Initially I tried keeping it private because I found it to be an incredibly personal journey that I was on, but I soon found out that not eating, playing sport or socialising starts raising some eyebrows. So the private idea changed and the few times I shared a little more elaborately on what I was doing I felt inclined to write about it too.

I found the whole experience to be quite profound! My primary purpose was to simplify and focus. I never expected one of the most powerful lessons of the battle of wills within myself. When temptation to break my fast crept in, like when there was a little bite sized cookie left on the table that no-one would notice if I nicked it, or at home when I had some yummy food stashed in my fridge, it became a glorious battle! I had a dialogue that went something like this, “what would it matter, no-one will really notice, no-one would really care, what difference would it make to eat or not to eat; and then came the counter. . but wait, remember why have I decided to do this, what do I want to see happen here, what do I want these days to look like when I reflect on them afterwards?” And often, quite suddenly, the temptation would dissipate completely. And through this self-talk cycle I created a habit of resisting temptation and keeping my eyes on the target, the end goal, and maintaining a strong focus on how I want it to look when I get there. It was amazing to see how my actions would fall in line with my vision when my vision became clear.

I was asked if I had found, reached or got to what I was hoping to see come out of these two weeks? Because, to be honest it would have been great to be able to say I had some big life revelations, or epiphanies, but I didn’t. Cos don’t we all wish we could just have it all figured out! What I do have now is a clearer vision, a healthier set of priorities, a knowledge and habit that my self-control can be stronger than my selfish will and I have a greater sense of peace that I haven’t had in many years.