This is a rhododendron at mom’s house in Ohio. It is where I grew up. The building in the background is the old Boyd School House. It’s a one-room schoolhouse that is no longer in operation. My grandfather taught here for many years. The woods behind it is my “home woods”. It’s where I spent a lot of time birding as a boy.
So why the introspection? Do you ever have times in your life where everything just seems to go so fast that it is just insanely hectic? A day or a week flies by and you don’t even know what you did? Or where you went? Or why you are racing around at a break-neck pace? Yeah. It happens to me, too. And that is exactly the time that I know I need to force myself to stop for a time and take a moment to reflect. Not only do birds help relax my mind. Absorbing the beauty of this gorgeous rhododendron calms my mind and centers my heart.
I pause to reflect on good things. Nature is broadcasting 24/7. It’s our job to tune in and enjoy it from time to time. And I pay attention to my surroundings. I quiet myself to listen to my heart. It’s easy to become distracted with busy things and miss the important things in life.
It’s the busiest times in life that are the most important times to refocus. Remember who you are–and what you do well. And when I am calm again I can think with more clarity. What does the future hold? What will I be doing next week? Next year? I choose to live my life proactively. Having goals is so important. I used to struggle often with living my life in a reactionary way. Life would just happen and everything I did was only trying to deal with what came at me. My life was dictated by events that were out of my control. And that, my friend, is no way to enjoy life–well, for me anyways.
I am not saying that I am a control freak–that I can control all the events in my life. But some of them I can. The life I have now is a wonderful blend of choices I have already made in my life by planning and by choices I have made in a predetermined fashion. I can choose the attitude that I deal with things that are out of my control. And this is what I find to be so soul satisfying. I don’t get as rattled or as freaked out by surprises–and they do happen. It’s been a long journey to de-stress my life. But it has certainly been worth it.
Life is all about knowing yourself well enough to give yourself realistic expectations. What really makes you happy? What makes you tick inside? I remember a saying I heard years ago, “Your happiness does not belong in someone else’s head”. Your inner happiness should not be determined by what other people think. But managing your own expectations for yourself is a good first step.
So tonight is a good time of reflection for me. The tranquility of a pretty evening sunset was a quiet inspiration. Tomorrow is a new day. New and exciting things are ahead. I hope to share some of my plans as my goals come together. Good night all.