From the H3 Vault: Minding the Gap
My days of late have been busier than I could have imagined. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining. They are days full of gratifying work, connecting with people and sharing my experience, strength and hope. Lately, however, I have had to increase my personal commitment to practice what I preach. Most notably, I’ve had to mind the gap.
In the midst of these busy days, I have had to recognize and take advantage of the small moments when the universe is asking me to slow down and get present. You may not be aware of what these moments are but they look a lot like this…being on hold with the cable company, sitting at a long red light (otherwise called a GOOCHER by my kids), standing in any line that doesn’t seem to be moving, or being stuck in traffic on the highway. These are usually moments when our jaw clenches, we repeatedly look at our watch and expletives are freely forthcoming.
These are the precise moments when it’s time to acknowledge that we are being asked to slow down or stop. We can’t seem to find time for it ourselves, so the universe steps in. They are little gifts waiting to be acknowledged with a small meditation, a prayer of gratitude, a mindful exercise involving the senses or getting out of our head by being of service to others.
These moments, or gaps, can add to our stress levels or can help us to “reboot.” When we focus on things we are grateful for while sitting at a long red light, we experience joy instead of anxiety. When we focus on our breath while sitting in traffic, we sooth our spirit and feel peace in a situation we have no control over. When we call a friend in need to inquire about their wellbeing while waiting in line for Black Friday shopping, we trade our frustration for compassion.
With the holidays quickly approaching, many new gaps await. Just think of all the mindfulness exercises you can do while waiting in line during Christmas shopping! Tis the season to focus on gratitude during the hustle and bustle. Don’t forget to receive the gift of the gap.