Keep your eyes on the prize: how to quiet the chatter and remain present

Leave a comment

During a recent visit with my acupuncturist, I informed her that the chatter in my mind overwhelmed me. She treated me accordingly and I walked out of her office feeling calm, centered. As I drove home that evening, I contemplated how easy it is to become preoccupied by distractions that don’t serve or advance our purpose. How we get wrapped up in the news, TV, politics, social media or anything else that adds to the “chatter.” I’m not advocating ignorance: it’s important to remain educated on what’s taking place around us—near and far. And to get involved in whatever capacity we’re able. But here’s where we must be mindful: If we spend more time immersed in diversions, we begin to worry, play the comparison game, make excuses and turn inward. Live in our own little worlds. If we keep our eyes on the prize, however, it’s easier to quiet the chatter and remain present. To make a difference.

How do you keep your eyes on the prize?

Photo source:

Going for the gold(en) nugget

1 Comment

[Graphic image: smokedsalmon]

Typically when I travel — especially back “home” to visit family and friends — I learn something new.  In a past post entitled Quality or quantity …, I discussed the importance of enjoying any time we’re afforded to spend with our loved ones, as we never know how much time we’ll have.  For instance, I discovered it doesn’t matter if my dad and me are sitting on the sofa holding hands and laughing as we watch America’s Funniest Home Videos, or if I’m savoring a moment with an old friend when no words are even necessary.  And sometimes if we’re lucky, we’re presented a golden nugget — an unexpected prize.  Maybe it’s in the form of a story you’ve never heard before, or a deeper connection formed between you and your sister or great nephew or best friend.  Whatever it is we gain, it’s ours to do with as we will.  These are the pieces that make up the whole of us.

What golden nugget have you been presented lately?

Never settle for second best

Leave a comment

[Graphic image: Victor Habbick]

Always be a first-rate version of yourself,
instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.
~ Judy Garland

Thinking you’ll never measure up is a tough cookie to swallow.  Maybe it’s a job you’re going after, a relationship that’s hanging on by a thread and either needs mending or cutting free, or perhaps you believe it’s not possible to achieve first place in whatever capacity you’re aspiring toward.  In your eyes no begging, screaming, cajoling, promising — not even compromising — will change where you stand.  That’s okay, because this is when we need to take Garland’s advice, move out of our backseat mentality and get comfortable behind the wheel.  Cast aside those feelings of frustration, rejection, self-doubt and second-guessing.  Maybe what we’re striving for isn’t worth it, after all.  But if it is, then Someday the reward will be greater because we were nothing less than ourselves.  For me the hardest part is accepting that it may not be until tomorrow, next month or a dozen years from now before I receive the prize.  But that doesn’t change who I am.

Are you always striving to be the best you can be?

Refocusing our attention

Leave a comment

[Image credit: kangshutters]

Recently, I read that instead of expecting a friend, or child or spouse to meet our needs, we’re supposed to try to be the best friend, or parent or spouse we can be.  I’ve been thinking about that concept a lot lately.  I think it’s an idea that can also be applied to other situations, as well, like when we desire something — whether it’s a material item or the fruition of a dream.  Rather than wallowing in our frustration at not being able to have whatever it is we want at the time, we can choose to refocus our attention off of ourselves until the timing is right for us to achieve the prize.  Hopefully, we’ll get so wrapped up in a good cause, or new venture or countless other things, that before we know it, we’re at the finish line.  And by the end of our journey, we may also discover we’re the very best fill in the blank we can be.

What things do you throw yourself into to bide your time?