Regular “pit stops”
Many people exist to live but few, live with life. More specifically, “the essence of life’.
Many people live by choice and some live without a choice. Many living by choice, choose to live day-to-day without reflecting on their ways – their lives.
In seven years of owning and managing what was Australia’s Longest-running gym” at that time (48 years), I have gained a lot of insight in to life. I spent a lot of time listening and observing life through other peoples’ experiences (OPE), from people from all levels of society. From the very rich (I had a member that was one of the Top 100 wealthiest people in Australia) to the very poor.
Life has taught me a lot. So far. I am approaching the half century mark in calendar years but feel (and tell my children) that I have lived over a hundred years. Strange? Yes, but there are stranger things.
We all face problems in our lives. Some more than others.
One such problem, as I see it is being so ‘busy’ that they don’t take ‘time out’ or what I refer to as regular ‘pit-stops’ like a good grand prix racing car driver does.
Why is this important? It is, not only for recovery and re-infusion of vitality and the life force but also, time out for reflection.
Alarmingly, this has been happening since the dawn of time. One of the biggest issues facing many is that they are living unexamined lives.
Life view and purpose
Most men (and women) have not carefully plotted their life view and purpose.
Many use the ‘scatter-gun approach’ and hope to get a hit, similar to the concept of the lotto and why it taps in to the very nature of people’s inner sanctity.
They have not really taken the time to ‘think’, or to UN-think.
Taking regular time out to really reflect and honestly examine their life so far and the life they would like to live in to the future. Many just go about life copying the generations that has passed before them or what they are told by the media. Yes, to think is very difficult, especially, to think about the one life that you have.
As we’ve all heard or read – “to think is the most difficult thing to do.”
Indeed it is.
Not taking time out to reflect is akin to using a cassette tape player to listen to music in the technological age we’re in now. The cassette player is part of the heaps of ‘stuff’ we used to use once-upon-a-time in our lives. Now, though, it is not relevant. The model is not relevant.
That applies to many things that you’ve been wired to think and do, basically downloaded from previous generations into your amazing computing machine (your brain) in the first seven years of your life, even before you had a choice in the matter. Operating systems (beliefs, values, way of thinking, world-view, lifestyle etc) that was relevant for the previous generations but not now. Not for the life you live now and in the near future.
As scientists say – “you are the activity of your neurons.”
To make changes, any worthwhile change is not easy. True. But there is reason to believe, if you believe, we can shape our connectome by the actions we take, even by the things that we think, according to Neuroscientist, Sebastian Seung in his book: Connectome.
The thing is despite our brain wiring making us who we are, we play an important role in re-wiring our brains.
By desire. Strong desire.
Knowing what to retain and what to let go takes skill and wisdom. Something you are not taught in the education system, there are no ‘manual on HOW TO use your brain’ and mind. It is left to chance for many.
A wise old friend once told me to be an expert on “managing my funnel better.’ In other words, learn the art of “cutting out more bullshit in your life”.
And many would rather take the ‘chance’ then take the time to reflect and THINK. It is the easier path to take.
Notice I said, easier, not better.
I can put it down to many things.
One Key thing is: it is people’s inability to search for truth and obedience to GOD! This model has stood the test of time and is still relevant today. It is the only way to salvation.
Maybe, salvation is where heaven is. Maybe, heaven is just a giant computer mainframe and we are all PCs connected to this ‘heaven’ or consciousness at different levels and/capacities.
In the modern world we live in, it seems everybody is in a rush and are ‘busy’.
It’s almost as if it is a competition. Everyone is trying to be busier than the next person. People are rushing from task to busy task and even ‘multi-tasking’ with pride, but are not taking enough time-out or pit-stops to reflect on life’s larger meaning and purpose.
“Is this the path to truth, to my search for beauty?” many ask.
What should you do?
Maybe, learn how others do it. Like, say, the Fijians for example. Why? Because they have made the term “Fiji Time” very famous and are regularly viewed as the Happiest People on the planet.
Well, for many reasons, one of which is that they understand between being and respecting ‘being in the moment’ and keeping it separate from memories. They do this very well because they take regular ‘time out’ and don’t necessarily see life as a sprint, but a marathon.
Another reason is: they are very religious and spiritual as a race, a culture, a nation. It has the highest ‘believers’ per capita in the world. They have very strong and un-wavering belief and faith.
They always have a day of ‘rest’. Individually and as a nation, they respect this day in thought and actions they take. This day of rest is a day of ‘reflection’. By reflecting, they increase awareness – of self and of matters external to them. This reflection allows each person the ability to give thanks and boost their attitude of gratitude’ towards living and towards their provider:
And how am I an authority on everything “Fijian”and better understanding of ‘happiness’ than most people?
Because I was born and lived my early childhood in Fiji. I am 1/16th Fijian. It is in my blood, a drop I know, but it is there.
I now reside in one of the busiest and most beautiful cities in the world, Sydney Australia but …
As I’ve heard before …
You can take the Fijian out of the islands, but you can’t take the Fijian-ness out of the boy.
Take it from me (and the vast majority of OPEs), Life is not a sprint. It is a long-distance marathon or grand prix car race.
The one with more strategic scheduled ‘pit-stops’ usually lives not only a long, good life but but a long good life of significance.
It’s your life, afterall.
Tip: Periodically Stop. Breathe. Reflect. Give thanks. Begin again
The brain cannot multi-task, this is a myth.
Neuroscience shows that the brain can only TASK-SWITCH.
You CANNOT multi-task without mistakes[/caption]
A valuable asset you possess: your attention
People live like their life as if it were a sprint.
A sprint to this elusive place. Where? It depends. Ask them when they stop, or …. when they’re six-feet under.
Many people are consumed in action(s), constantly reacting to a never-ending in-box of stimulus vying for their attention, time and money. A seemingly endless menu of options of reactions to constant interruption. Interruption to your life … your hours … your seconds.
People are spending a big portion of their 86,400 seconds per day just reacting to interruption (via the various technological inputs we have today in addition to other mediums). People’s attentions are being hijacked and in turn, so are their lives (time) and money.
What is all this rushing around for? Where will it ultimately get you?
I think it was Ghandi that said once “There is more to life than increasing its speed.”
Like everything else, practise helps.
As a lawyer or an Accountant or a sportstar is no better than the effort he puts into keeping up with his profession, so is the Christian no better than the effort he puts into self-examination of life’s big questions.
So, if you have not done so already, make time to reflect and examine your life today … before it is too late. It is your life, you only have one life after all. Achieve your salvation.
As Socrates said a long time ago –
“The unexamined life is not worth living”.
Start praying for answers to life’s big questions. I believe that your most important task is to not only be unafraid to ask questions but to ask the right questions.
For your sake, if you have not done so already, start examining the most important person in the world to you and that is: YOU! You do this by slowing down, having periodic time-outs and reflecting.
It can be very scary and a very difficult thing to do, to think. As a start, release all fears and release all doubt to aid you to release the unexamined life and embrace the examined life.
Find your way, your true path in life, even if it is a path less travelled.
Become increasingly Aware; take sufficient and appropriate Actions. Adapt (My Triple A philosophy to self-improvement in all areas of life).
Examine life. Examine you. To become the best you. Then, by default, everyone else gets the best of you too.
The examined life may not be all that flash either but I think it would be a life worth living as it would attract what you expect and reflect what you desire.
All the best!
Until next time,
Allow your mind to ”connect’ with infinite intelligence.
It is like nothing you’ve ever experienced before.