Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Being fully present by Elaine Williams

In this day and age (May 17, 2009) my life seems to be spinning faster and faster with each passing month and year. It seems like I blink and suddenly half of the year has gone by, suddenly my niece and nephew have gotten a foot taller!

Where does the time go?

My days feel like they are one long endless to do list. (I must confess that I love making my list and then getting to cross off the completed items.)

Like many motivated entrepreneurs, I feel like I will never be done, that there will always be a million other things that need to be done if I am going to take my business to the next level.

I find myself in a state of constant multi tasking: texting at red lights, listening to voice mail while on the toilet while also opening mail; returning phone calls while running to appointment in NYC with sirens haunting me on the streets; eating lunch, breakfast, or snacking while checking emails, blogs, and facebook.

And then I wonder why I feel scattered, sensory overload and harried…

More and more I have been gently reminded by the universe about the fabulous gift of being fully present and mindful, moment by moment, in life.

I was sort of suffering a month ago in my life. I have been getting what I WANT for a change: more and more comedy gigs in the tri state area, PAID speaking gigs on topics I am truly passionate about, and finally finishing a rehab project to make my basement into a cool home office... and yet, I was not enjoying much of it. I felt tired, harried, totally not present to what many years of hard work had created.

And thankfully, I had been moved to check out Eckhart Tolle’s book, The New Earth, and to listen to it on the way to some gigs. (He also wrote about The Power of Now, so it was wonderful to listen to him talk about being fully present in the moment, and to look at my ego.) I also started to read another recommended book, the Presence Process, which after only a few pages gave me a new sense of freedom, peace, and stillness.

I think the lesson I am getting is that no matter how fast paced this world seems to get; and I have a feeling that with aging and all the technological progress it will continue to be fast, the secret is to be able to come from a moment to moment “center” in my daily life. And I must admit that after listening and just starting to read the previously mentioned books, I felt released from my suffering.

I started to enjoy my life again. I got present to my accomplishments and what I HAVE created as opposed to what was left to do.

I am intending to be more mindful in my life. I am continually challenging myself to be fully present to what I am doing, and to attempt to do just one thing, really well, at a time…something that my multi tasking body has been trained NOT to do for years!

I am heading back to the NYC area after performing at two comedy clubs in WA state. While working at the second club, I met a waitress with beautiful tattoos. Now I must say that ALL of the waitresses at this particular club had tattoos, but I was especially drawn to the purple flowers with green vines on one of her arms because the viney flowers framed a gorgeous, simple, splendid word that we all could use as a reminder.

The word was: breathe.

When I first saw it, I thought, well I should tattoo that one to my forehead!

And so, my dear reader, I will pass it on: just a gentle reminder to breathe.

I challenge you this week to stop and take deep breaths several times throughout your day.

Put post it notes around your home, office, and car.

Ask yourself, are you fully present with whatever you are doing, no matter how mundane?

Perhaps even the most trivial of tasks can take on a profound feeling if there is total and complete attention and intention put towards them.

Who knows, maybe taking out the trash and folding laundry could have a whole new element of surprise and sexiness?

Whatever your week holds for you, I implore you, I challenge you to breathe and to practice being fully present!

Elaine Williams is a certified life coach, comedian, and speaker. She loves to make people laugh and help inspire others to live their dream lives! You can learn more about her comedy at www.elaine-williams.com and life coaching at www.creativelifecoaching.org.
If you want to be a part of her documentary: The Power of Healing Through Laughter, feel free to contact her at laineywill@yahoo.com.

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