With my annual exodus to the beach to recharge my soul now behind me, I’m working hard at carrying the calm that comes from the sea air and surf with me as I face each day in the real world.
As I told a co-worker “I’m trying hard to hang onto my vacation
This is something I tell myself I’m going to do every year,
but a month or two into the real world
post vacation I’m working my way back into the “when is my next day off mind-set.”
I don’t mean the weekend;
I mean an actual vacation day, a day
with no real schedule, a day to play.
Like a day off is the cure all for the every day
stresses we all endure. Granted it
helps, but there has to be a way to find
peace throughout every day, not just on a vacation day. Especially when
they’re so few and far between.
Rumor has it, the key to finding this peace is to pause, breath deep and center your thoughts on something tranquil. This
may be true, but the real trick is to prevent
getting to this point.
As I drove to work one morning since my beach trip, at a point in my
travels where I crest a hill and the morning sun shines across the hills of the
valley, my thoughts meandered to the
calm I felt as I took in the beauty of nature. It was the same calm that happens when I’m free from schedules, deadlines and to do
I may have been driving to work, but my mind
and body were calm and free from the typical morning watch the clock en
route to work mode.
It was at this point that
I realized the key to carrying the calm
the beach gives me is to find that calm
from nature throughout every day, not just when I’m intentionally taking a
break to do so, like a week at the beach or a walk or bike ride on the trail
near my house.
I need to
consciously pause daily to observe this beauty and soak in the calm.
Observing nature around me when I’m driving is the norm for me, but while in the office it’s a different story. Like most, my office is
in a suburban area and I’m stuck in a cubicle. So observing nature takes more of an effort. Not that there
aren’t windows in the building, but I have to leave my cubicle to access them
which is certainly doable, but standing
at the front door staring out may concern my Boss.
It’s a matter of
being attentive to the smallest thing, even if just in passing.
A small bird building a
nest above the front door, the wind lightly rustling the leaves on the branches
of the tree in front of the building or the shadows the sun casts on the
sidewalk as it dances through the leaves of the tree.
attention to drift from my work to the beauty outside the window is essential
to me fulfilling my desire to “hang onto my vacation shine.”
This might seem a bit spacey, but taking just 30 seconds to pause and focus on something other than the task at
hand will allow me to clear the
clutter of the day from my brain and allow my mind and body to calm itself.
At home I
sometimes do this randomly,
especially at sunrise and sunset. I’m a real sky watcher and the drama and
colors that can explode at those times can stop me in my tracks, and often do.
SO, I do have this built into my make-up, it’s just a
matter of consciously taking a moment
during the busy work day to look out the window, soak up natures beauty and recharge, even if I’m not feeling
The idea of being pro-active when it comes to nipping stress in the bud before it strikes is nothing new. There
are plenty of books, magazines and blogs with “how to” info, BUT, what works for one, may not work for
another, so the trick is finding
what calms you, and then figuring out a way to seek this during the flurry of every day.
For me that thing is obviously nature. It has a soothing effect on me. Using it as “therapy” during the workday is
something I never thought of before, at least consciously.
Beyond the anti-stress
benefits, I also find being in-tune with
nature to be very beneficial to my spiritual
growth which just so happens to also tie directly into my road of self-rediscovery.
Whether we want to admit
it or not, all journeys of
self-discovery or rediscovery involve
some level of spiritual awakening or
reawakening. After all, we are all spiritual
beings having a human experience and our spirit is here to experience all the lessons this life has to offer.
So I see this “30 seconds of nature to stay calm epiphany”
as a stepping-stone in my sojourn to
rediscover myself. A stepping stone that can turn into a leap if I can truly live by my words.
The pressures of
every day will be the real barometer of my success. I’ll keep you posted.
© Mariann E.
Danko and Waking the Woman, 2019. All rights reserved.
Goddess Masthead © Pamela Danko-Stout and Waking the Woman, 2019. All rights reserved.
Photos from my personal collection