My husband and I recently went on a long-awaited trip to Disneyworld. Just the two of us, and our trip was everything I dreamed of and more. The Cubs won the World Series on our last night, so we ended the trip with as much excitement as we started it.
Then we came home. The laundry, leaky toilet and ringing phone replaced the slow boat ride full of colors and lights singing “It’s a small world after all,” and I started complaining. It wasn’t long before I found myself walking around in circles making mental lists of all the things I needed to do, and doing none of them. My left brain was in overdrive, and I was making myself miserable.
Then I remembered what it felt like to be at Disneyworld. I walked around enjoying everything, noticing what was going on around me, listening to the sounds and smelling the large turkey legs roasting. I smiled a lot and felt careless and free. I was in the flow.
Can I get that feeling here at home even when there is all this life happening that wants my attention? The answer for me was yes… and no. I can for a while, then I can’t.
Jill Bolte Taylor gives herself “whine time” when she struggles to take her left-brain chatter offline. She literally tells her mind, you can “whine rampantly between 9-9:30am and then again between 9-9:30pm.” All other times are off limits. In recovering from her stroke, she learned to take full responsibility for her state of mind. And like anything, it is a practice.
I can do that! I can practice remembering what it feels like to be at peace and even for a minute or three feel peaceful. I know I can, and I know that just like anything else, the more I practice the easier it is to replace my human being-ness with the peace that passes all understanding.
Deborah Denson is a Mediator and Conflict Coach in Nashville, TN. She shares her personal journey learning to manage conflict and life in general on her blog, where she combines original art and wit into a daily dose of insight and humor for readers.