Please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com for information on guest blogs and interviews. Interviews for July: (7/6) Jennifer J. Chow (7/13) Meri Allen/Shari Randall (Book 1--Ice Cream Shop Mystery), (7/20) Susan Van Kirk, (7/27) Meri Allen/Shari Randall (Book 2--Ice Cream Shop Mystery).

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Finding Headspace by Kait Carson

In the not so distant past, I held a job where I worked twelve-hour days. It was hectic. I regularly juggled a twenty-five client case load. Much of the work was litigation. All of the work had deadlines. Some tighter than others. I lived in fear of missing deadlines, which in my world, the legal world, could result in our team receiving a default. In other words, miss the deadline, the other side wins. No contest, no appearance. The consequences were real.

 

Learning to cope in that environment was an artform. I organized my days with the precision of a general planning a battle. There was no room for error. It took a toll. I longed for the days when my time would be my own, but knew that day was far off. For Christmas, my husband gave me a gift of a year of an app named Headspace.

 

Headspace is a meditation app. There is no more grounded person on the face of this earth than my husband. For him to gift me with something that smacked of “New Age” was a revelation. No, he hadn’t tried it, but he’d read up on it, researched it, and thought I would find it useful. I’d meditated in college and on and off afterwards, but the thought of meditating for stress reduction never crossed my mind.

 

I tried it, I liked it, I used it for a while, and it helped. At some point, my schedule got so crazy that I couldn’t fit meditation time into it. I cancelled the membership and that was that. I thought.

 

In July of 2020 COVID happened and my very demanding day job went away. We moved to Maine and I celebrated. Finally, I thought, I’d have time for myself. And I did. All twenty-four hours of the day spread before me in all their glory. I could use them as I saw fit. Bwa haa ha. Or as the fates said, “Yeah. Right.” There is such a thing as too much of a good thing. I had all those hours, I had huge plans for all those hours, I let all those hours distract me.

 

I need organization. I crave it. I make lists. I make outlines. I check the boxes. I get in my own way. I needed to shut down the noise and use the time I had. In an attempt to gain time, I went back to my library of books on the Law of Attraction. This is a simple concept that essentially says be careful what you think, it’s coming. It’s an effective process made more effective through meditation. Easy peasy. Nope.

 

Using the techniques in Sarah Hertz’s book The Universe Always Delivers Twice I made some headway, but not enough. I decided to add in a dedicated meditation period and I rejoined Headspace. Now I greet the morning with a meditation period during which I solidify the plans and desires for the day. It’s made me more peaceful and productive. If I find myself going astray, or getting in my own way, a simple five-minute meditation break helps me focus. At the end of the day, I find most of the items on my to-do list are accomplished and I’m refreshed and ready to spend time with family and friends.

 

Do you have an unorthodox practice to help you organize and get through your day? Tell us about it.

12 comments:

Jim Jackson said...

Well done, Kait.

I have no unorthodox practice for organizing myself, relying on SMART goals, monthly, weekly, and daily prioritized to do lists.

But as I go to bed each night, I read until I am tired, then put down the Kindle. I close my eyes and think of six things I am grateful for that happened that day. I often to not finish my grateful practice before I am asleep.

Susan said...

I think,Kait, we are all feeling a need for quiet time, no matter how we fill it. Glad you are managing yours.

Margaret S. Hamilton said...

Great blog, Kait. I'm struggling to find quiet time every day.

KM Rockwood said...

How wonderful that you are able to identify and use something that works so well for you! Most of us need something beyond ourselves to support us in achieving what we know we are able to do.

Kait said...

@Jim, What a wonderful practice, Jim. Gratitude is the secret of a happy and well-balanced life.

@Susan, So true. We have so much information hurtling at us on a regular basis. Finding space is so important.

@Margaret, Thanks, Margaret. It seems that taking time for ourselves should be a necessity, not a luxury, but it doesn't often work that way.

@KM, Thanks, KM, I am enjoying the practice.

Annette said...

I've been a yoga practitioner for decades and taught yoga and meditation for years. At some point, I got away from the meditation part of my practice. When Covid hit, I started again, first with Fitbit mindfulness sessions. Then I reconnected online with one of my earliest yoga/meditation teachers and signed up for some classes with her. It's not the guided meditations the apps generally use. It's simply silence and being aware of the present moment. I still use the guided sessions on Fitbit sometimes, but I love that I've rediscovered how to quiet my thoughts and just sit and be with the silence.

Then I get up and write like crazy!

Molly MacRae said...

I love this post and all the comments. Daily, weekly, and monthly goals seem to work for me. Also the quiet part of the morning when no one else is up.

Kait said...

@Annette - that sounds wonderful. When I had used the apps the first time, I eventually got into that blessed space of quiet. It did take a while, though, to get over the "something shiny" distractions. I'm looking forward to attaining that peace again.

@Molly, Thanks, Molly! Quiet mornings. Nirvana!

Shari Randall said...

Learning so much from your post and the comments. I'm a huge list maker but haven't made enough time for slowing down and clearing my mind. I'm going to check out the book you recommended. Thanks, Kait.

Kait said...

@Shari - I hope you enjoy it!

Korina Moss said...

I like lists, as well (if only so I'll remember all the to-dos I'm supposed to do) and I do try to set my intention every morning, but I don't always succeed. Even though I've tried different meditation at times and have always felt better afterwards, I still can't seem to make it a habit.

Kait said...

@Korina - It's the habit that's hard. I always try for morning, but there are times that life gets in the way, and once I break the habit, the second time is easier, and before I know it - square one. I'm hoping that since I have more control over my time, I'll be able to make this stick.