Everybody needs time to be still. Stillness implies stopping something – moving, talking, eating, worrying, crying, laughing, agitating – whatever it is, we all need to stop and be still.
But how difficult is it to stop yourself and just be in the moment, in the presence of something bigger than yourself and not to fret about what you are not doing?
I suppose the answer lies in the difference between being and doing, and sometimes, when we are so wrapped up in doing we forget what it’s like to simply be.
When are the best times to be still? Anyone can be still when they are relaxed or comforted, restful and happy, but what about the times when you are stressed and angry, or agitated and sad?
Are you like me, who when I get stressed and bogged down with things to do, I turn into a ball of spiky energy and get so wrapped up in myself that I can’t function? If you are, then you’ll recognise the added angst I feel when someone tells me to ‘calm down’. The worst two words in the English language!
But what happens if you can calm down, and you can stop yourself getting tighter and tighter wound up into a ball? I had a wonderful opportunity this evening to be still, and to be calm, and to not be distracted by the jobs and tasks mounting on my my ‘to do’ list and it was wonderful. For the space of an hour and a half I was in fellowship with some of my church family, which in itself is a calming atmosphere, but in that time we spent just 3 minutes or so listening to some music with the lights low which was like a shot in the arm for me. I didn’t really focus on the music and I didn’t even focus on the things I’d left at home but I did manage to just enjoy the moment and to feel a connection to the world that gets lost in the stress and anxiety of living.
I feel better for it too. The things that were making me so angry have simmered down and don’t seem so prominent now, and I have been able to get a grip on my sliding anxiety. I still have a lot to do but it somehow doesn’t feel so frightening now.
What ways do you find to be still? Do you find it difficult to justify the time to yourself if you do take some time out? How do you recognise the need to be still?
Or is it something you hadn’t thought about before?
If that’s you, then take some time to be still and let yourself simply be, not do. Let me know how you get on.