Reason to Stop and Smell the Roses
In today’s productivity-oriented lifestyle, we seldom get time to observe our surroundings and to live life at a leisurely pace. With our heads bent down, our mind and time are occupied with gadgets or worries of the world. We suffer through hours of aches and ailments just to reach our goals. We start to change our outlook on life. We start noticing fine lines drawn on our forehead by frowning too much and notice faults in our body. In this scenario, will you still be a success, when you are too burned out at 40, unable to reap its benefits? Sure, to succeed, working hard and long hours are key, but knowing when to stop and take a break is more integral to life.
A world of peace and quiet is closer than you think. When was the last time you heard the sweet chirp of a bird? Do you remember the feeling of fresh air filling your lungs at dawn? What about the last time when you basked in the multi-colours of dusk? Unknowingly, we all crave for these. There’s a little bit of peace in the chaos - you just have to find it.
We see things, experience, learn and bloom into mature human beings capable of taking care of ourselves if only we did it the right way. According to the wisdom of Ayurveda, with a balanced lifestyle, our quality of living will improve, which will make it so much easier to maintain a positive and optimistic frame of mind. Life is just like a limited time offer, in which the terms and conditions are not to be missed. Time whizzes by far too quickly, so, it is important to mindfully restore the balance and make the offer worth cherishing.
With baby steps, you can start incorporating a balanced lifestyle, and through time watch the effects. Your stress will reduce, helping you think clearly & practically, your immunity will soar, making you hale & hearty and you shall realise it as you start to be more positively present. When you feel down, remind yourself to not sweat over the small things and to introduce some calming practices to help you be at peace amidst the chaos. In the long run, it helps.
Giving a grateful moment helps you relive memories. Gratitude brings a lot of happiness and lightens the load off your back. To practice gratitude, it is important to recognise and acknowledge the value of the person/thing you are grateful for and feel positively connected to them. By appreciating meaningful things and people in your life, you will feel a surge of positivity pulse through your veins, making you bright and cheerful. Positivity is what we are looking for if you’re feeling positive - you’re doing it right.
Aesop says, "No act of Kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted”. Kindness is a basic human virtue that seems long forgotten. Being kind and empathetic towards other human beings is more rewarding than it sounds. Try it out! The next time you venture out into the world, take a moment to look around. Find a boy looking lonely sitting on a park bench, ask if you can sit next to him and have a chat and give him company. See an old lady trying to cross the street, help her to the other side. Hear a little girl crying over spilt ice cream, how about a cone for both of you? Random acts of kindness are the best way to bring a spring back to your step and a smile to your face when you reflect back on those memories, and not to mention, a little humility in your perspective. Aesop was right!
Here are a few ways you can take a brief timeout.
One quick and easy way is to incorporate the practice of Meditation. Meditation, in popular culture, is a dish which is only possible with a number of ingredients like incense, yoga mat etc., but actually, all you need is a comfortable place and focussed breathing. With your eyes closed, focus on your breath, feel your brain expand with every inhale and relax with every exhale. Gently acknowledge any stray thoughts that may arise by getting your focus back to your breath and leave those thoughts to be handled effectively at a later time. At this moment, nothing else matters, just you focusing on your breath to work towards a healthier mind capable of peacefully tackling any obstacles that may come your way.
Not too difficult, right? Any activity that you enjoy and that takes your mind off the mundane is nothing short of meditation. Plugin some good music and dissolve in the rhythm while you empty your mind, dance to the beat and let loose your worries… Believe it or not, you will feel rejuvenated. These are the pauses that we need to bring into our lives, just so that we can return to work with renewed vigour and enthusiasm.
Even just doodling on a piece of paper relaxes your mind, let alone enjoying a hobby of drawing or painting a work of art. Engross yourself in the lines and curves that you draw and see your own life taking a new shape when you return to your serious task at hand. 'De-task' and detox by just doodling.
Incorporate elements of the things you like in your routine. It could be just as small as taking a bite of cheese or chocolate during a busy moment to get a kick from the bite and lift up your spirits. Sounds stealthy? But it is fun!
Spend time with your loved ones and cherish each moment as it goes by and laugh to your heart's content. This adds value to your life as well as theirs.
Get yourself busy with a hobby like gardening. Grow and tend your own garden. It is healthy and you will never be depressed. And life will look rosy to you.
Take time to pet and feed the furry neighbourhood friends. You will notice that when they come nosing around, it improves their morale and makes you feel lighter on your step. And there is a reason they are called ‘pets’!
There are many more things that you could do to help you take a moment out of a hectic schedule to soothe yourself. All you have to do is find the one that works for you. A practise that effectively helps you, once in a while, pause and smell the roses.