Towards WE & BEYOND – Impressions from a shared journey Part VI
The horn of the plenty is overflowing …
Do you know the feeling of being overwhelmed by the abundance of modern life? Abundance of information through internet and other media, abundance of contacts through traveling and social media, abundance of problem waiting to be solved, abundance of choices and possibilities to contribute, learn, participate – all fuelled by a deep passion and commitment to doing something useful with our own lives. When filling our plate, are our eyes not often being bigger than our stomach?
Yet how do we make choices when passion demands we should do it all? How to find a satisfying balance, choosing from all the things we love to do (while at the same time also ensuring we can provide for our families)?
Is there a secret to in how to manage the biggest scarcities of today effectively: TIME and personal ENERGY?
What does it take? What enables us to make choices AND make a contribution AND spend time with family and friends AND earn our living?
When Bettina expressed her frustration that the pursuit of one of her passions – running workshops and seminars, teaching and all the travel associated with it – was getting in the way of another passion of hers – thinking about and working on our book project – Dorothea was able to share an insight from her current sabbatical: only when we make some space and listen to the voice deep inside can we see the value and potential of our different options, can we discover our true yearnings and needs. This means it is when we are at our busiest that we need to free up some time – which may need a good friend, holding up a mirror to us so we can see the necessity of taking time out. As a dear friend of Bettina’s once said, “We are called human beings, not human doings!”
A poem came to mind:
Leisure by W.H. Davies
What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare? -
No time to stand beneath the boughs,
And stare as long as sheep and cows:
No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass:
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night:
No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance:
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began?
A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
Sharing and reflecting on this helped us both to better understand our individual journeys and current priorities as well as see the beauty and value of the complementarity of where each of us is currently: Bettina is very much engaging with the “outside world” while Dorothea, consciously taking the space to think, let go and let come.
Our sixth insight: Standing back, especially when we are busy, enables us to hear our individual “wake-up calls.” It provides us with a compass to navigate through all the abundances, and effectively and joyfully live to our full potential, to the benefit of all.