This morning I woke up already feeling behind. So much to do--so little time. I did what I usually do: walk the dog, exercise (a little!), make tea, read something that feeds the soul.
But through it all there was still a nagging sense of pressure. Too much left undone--so many worthy things. And a conviction--a hunch--a duty--a feeling--that if I only worked smarter or faster or harder or more skillfully I'd be able to do more stuff and do it better--and get the monkey of 'things left undone' off my back.
But (probably influenced by reading something that feeds the soul) instead of simply believing the storyline in my head, I stopped. Breathed. Prayed. Listened.
And listening deeply it was pretty easy to see what a bunch of crap my sense of Optimized Living was.
I kept still for awhile. Then wrote a few things down to remind me what my saner soul was hearing. During breakfast I opened Mary Oliver's book, A Thousand Mornings (I try to read one Mary Oliver poem 3 or 4 mornings a week).
What a lovely corresponding voice in the poem whose turn it was to be read today. What a blessing. Thank God for M O.
Today I'm flying low and I'm
not saying a word.
I'm letting all the voodoos of ambition sleep.
The world goes on as it must,
the bees in the garden rumbling a little,
the fish leaping, the gnats getting eaten.
And so forth.
But I'm taking the day off.
Quiet as a feather.
I hardly move though really I'm traveling
a terrific distance.
Stillness. One of the doors
into the temple.