Today, it’s your time.
Time has flown by so fast (we always say that, right!?) I’m on fire right now about this book I’m reading called 4000 Weeks. The gist is we’ve got roughly 4000 weeks in this life, and we keep trying to manage our time like it’s a conveyor belt that we’re supposed to put as much on as possible.
He says a lot of great stuff in the book, and I’m only a third through it! What’s striking me right now is how complicit we are in being distracted by our watches and phones. Yes, the socials and the devices are engineered to take advantage of our distract-ability. BUT, we’re also choosing them.
We drop the present moment at every boop and ding. And it’s not enough to take a quick look as see that it’s not the kids’ school. The boop must be examined and answered, at the cost of our connection with the present moment. And thus, we’ve missed some amount of our 4000 weeks.
Worse is when we’re doing something, engaged in a conversation or a task or a beautiful moment… and we ruin it by thinking we should take a picture, make a video, look up a thing, tell a friend. Like the present moment isn’t enough on it’s own. And that is the effect a dopamine withdrawal. Your brain, like any good addict, goes “oooh, a hit would be great right now” and comes up with a reason for you to go seek it. It’s also a way of hiding from the hard truths of our tiny, short human life.
So, here’s what we’re going to practice this weekend. Finish reading the instructions and then go do it.
- Go to the window
- stare out the window. Watch the birds, squirrels, bunnies, clouds… maybe even a dog parade depending on time of day.
- resist just 3 brain-addict distractions with an inhale and exhale. (Just the first 3 dings, either real or imagined. ) Bored? Great… that’s dopamine withdrawal. Breathe. Idea you should write down? Great, it’ll still be there in 2 minutes. Take a deep breath. Oh and that other thing? Inhale. Exhale.
- Repeat at least once per day.
That time staring out the window. That is life. Real, un-rushed, 100% human. It’s time slowed down some. Life seemingly lengthened. Enjoy it.