Being still

Sometimes we are so busy racing around, we lose balance.  Being still has nothing to do with inertia or a lack of dreams. It has everything to do with quieting down enough to consider your direction and to recognize your dreams.

Stop leaving and you will arrive. Stop searching and you will see. Stop running away and you will be found.  ~Lao Tzu

I’m fond of a show on HGTV about newbie home buyers. They are all dreams and no vision, but usually but the end of the show they have stopped chasing their own wish lists long enough to recognize the potential in the homes they are visiting. They are just so anxious to get it all right that they make that almost impossible.

When did we as a society forget that the finish line isn’t the point where success begins? A starting job is of great value and can teach so much. Glamorous? Maybe not, but does it need to be? A tiny apartment or a first home that needs a lot of paint and a lot of love are of just as much value as the home you build or buy after years of work and savings. Both these things…the starter job and the starter home…have something of huge value in common. You.

We rush ourselves into perfection. But when we do that, we often find that the perfection we achieve isn’t perfect for long. We can’t sit still long enough to enjoy it, to relax and savor. We have got to get to the next stage, the next achievement. If we keep leaving, searching and running away, as Lao Tzu points out, we won’t ever arrive, we won’t discover and we won’t be found.

The lesson which life repeats and constantly enforces is “look under foot”. You are always nearer the Divine and the true sources of your power than you think. The lure of the distant and the difficult is deceptive. The great opportunity is where you are. Do not despise your own place and hour. Every place is under the stars, every place is the center of the world.  ~John Burroughs

That’s not to belittle the value of motivation, of plans and of the desire to do, be or experience more. However, consider this. How much more could you be, upon reaching your destination, if you have stopped and savored what you were along the way? How much more power will you have if you learn the value of being still?

Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.  ~Carl Jung

Pausing, awakening and clarifying can only enhance the journey. When inner peace and outer motivation combine, the path is one of greater clarity and greater reward. Being still brings balance to the hectic energy that surrounds us.

May the outward and inward man be at one.  ~Socrates

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