Note: This was originally posted at The Dao of Doing, the blog Kel and Tracy started to document what happened as they added something they loved to their daily lives. Kel wrote about how her life used to feel like a stagnant pond in an early post (Ripples). She then documented the steps that led her to start changing her life in a series of Getting Started posts, which we’re sharing with you here in these last few days of 2012.
There were three important steps that helped bring about change in my stagnant pond life. These three little pebbles caused ripples to move the still surface of my days. They were:
- time alone
- writing down what I wanted
- starting now
Today we are focusing on time alone.
We all have time alone during the day like in the shower, driving in the car, or waiting in a doctor’s office. But I’m talking about a different kind of time alone. It’s more like a “date” with yourself. People date when they want to get to know each other. I can tell you that I really needed to get to know myself when I started my time alone. It’s a specific time to concentrate on you. This is exactly what I did to start changing my stagnant pond. I went to the library on Thursday nights to be with myself and my thoughts. The difference with this alone time is the intention. My intent was to pay attention to my thoughts and feelings without interruptions or feedback from others.
You don’t have to go to the library to do this. You could go to a park, take a walk, or ask your spouse or friend to take the kids for while. Just find a way to spend some time alone.
Time with friends, family, or spouses doesn’t count. They may be well meaning but you are the one who has to live your life. You should make the decision about what, if anything, has to be changed. Be alone, even if it is only 10 minutes a day. Be alone and quiet, so that you can hear your own thoughts. Why is it so important to spend time alone and think about what you really want in 2013? It’s so important because if you don’t know what you want, how can you create it?
If you’re wondering what you could be thinking of creating during this alone time, Adam Baker of Man Vs. Debt asked his readers “What Makes You Cry Tears of Joy?” He also asks what makes you laugh so hard your sides hurt, or what were you so excited about you couldn’t sleep?
I think these are all excellent questions that would help direct your thoughts to things you might want to create more of in your life.
It was also very helpful to me to acknowledge the things that were not working in my life as well. If you hate getting up everyday because you hate your job, then maybe looking for, training for, or going back to school for a different job would be good to take note of during your alone time. Knowing what you DON’T want to do is sometimes just as important as knowing what you DO want to do.
As of today there are 5 more days left in 2012. What can you do to make the most of these last few days of the year? Is it worth spending some time alone to organize your thoughts and dreams about the upcoming year?
Spending time alone was an important key for me to open the door of change in my life. I am no longer able to describe my life as a stagnant pond these days. It’s still a pond but it isn’t so stagnant now. Painting everyday is a pebble that moves the water around and keeps it fresh.
Spending time alone is a key, but like all keys, you have to pick it up and put it in the door to open it. Join us in making 2013 the year of YOU!