I’ve pretty much stopped focusing on the recent CA ruling, but the universe won’t let me ignore it. I’m getting requests for phone and TV interviews. I’m sure a lot of us are. I know pretty much anyone who is a volunteer in some capacity for HSC or CHN has received at least a call or two.
On top of that, we have several life things that are piling up. We STILL don’t have our pillows, or any idea if the hotel has found them. Our day is triple booked tomorrow, and my email box has over 300 messages that are waving at me, trying to get my attention.
That’s just some of what’s going on right now.
But I wonder, is it really all happening at once? Or does it just seem like it because there is so much frantic emotions flying around right now? Am I giving certain things too much attention?
I turned off my e-lists, reading them only in digest mode and I started deleting anything that has to do with the CA court case. It was almost as if I was keeping the emails as a way to have control over the situation. The truth is that I don’t have control of this situation at all. It is out of my hands. By reading every single email and replying to all the nay-sayers, I feel a modicum of control. But it gets to a point where the return is no longer worth the investment.
Same with my pillows. There will come a point where the angst of trying to get those pillows back will no longer be worth it, and it will simply be easier to get more pillows. The kids are attached to those pillows (and I am attached to mine), but is it so important that it’s worth spending days and weeks fighting for? Is any object that important?
My emails are important. But I have many other projects that are much more important than that. I have to draw the line somewhere. Time to start hitting the “delete” key liberally, and dealing with only the things that are really important.
The cool thing, is I have the choice. I can choose where to put my attention. Nobody is making me read emails or answer the phone. My freedom comes from being able to decide where my attention should be spent.
Our homeschooled kids are growing up with this kind of freedom – the ability to choose where to put their attention.
It’s important to have the freedom to choose to not pay attention to things. We need to be able to pick and choose our input, and to decide when the amount of energy needed compared to the benefit is just too much.
This is what happens when our kids check out – the benefit of their intense attention is not worth all the work that is necessary to maintain focus. When the benefit is clear, focus is much easier to attain. And best of all, it feels good. When intense focus starts to feel bad, it’s time to choose to not pay attention anymore, at least for a while.
So tonight, I decided to stop paying attention to the things that make me ungrounded. Spinning my wheels on something I can’t control (like the pillows, and a certain CA ruling) is crazy-making. Instead, I’m working on the things that move me forward. Right now, I am letting the universe take care of the things I can’t control, and focussing my attention on things that I can change.
Strangely, as I let go of the things I can’t change, I’m starting to unwind, and feeling like less is actually happening. Of course, it’s not true – everything is still happening. I’m simply choosing what to pay attention to, and by that, making it seem like less is happening. Amazing.
In addition, the world is not falling apart around me.
How much does our perspective on what’s happening effect the feeling of how overwhelmed we are? Have you ever been totally and completely busy, yet not at all overwhelmed? What is the element that defines whether or not we feel overwhelmed by events, or invigorated by them?