Posted in Happiness, Inspiring books, Reading, Solitude, Writing

The Return to Interiority

Even though I get melancholy when the season changes from summer to fall, and even more so when it changes from fall to winter, I have to admit that I really do love the return to interiority.

I just read a piece in Elephant Journal by a woman who went to a retreat at Kripalu and decided that she didn’t want to be alone with her “Self” after all.

That’s not me. Not at all. Me? I need solitude, a strong daily dose of it. When I am too much the “social butterfly” I become lost and scattered and my “self” starts pixelating beyond recognition.

In the Stephen Cope book I am reading now, I underlined this: (he is talking about Robert Frost here.)

“He intuited that he needed a life set close to nature–nature, which had always been his muse. Frost was intuitively aware of an important principle: In the cultivation of dharma, there is nothing more important than understanding what conditions are needed, and relentlessly creating them.” (p.81-2)

This has made me think about what conditions I need, and to try to actively create them. Do you know what conditions make you feel like you are living like your True Self?

As a result of reading this, I have instituted a new morning routine. I now get up a little earlier and make myself a cup of decaf . But instead of sitting down at the computer and checking email and Facebook, which was my usual habit, I now take my cup up to my Space Chair, turn on the little heater, and settle in with my book for an hour.

Winterized Space Chair

I can’t tell you how cozy and delightful this is! It seems like I’ve been whining forever about how I need  more time to read, and here it is. Now, instead of leaving my book to the end of the day, when I am toast, I am reading in the front part of the day, when I am rested, alert and receptive.

After an hour’s read, I go and make myself some amaranth cereal and bring it back up into my cozy lair and start alternately scribbling in my journal and shoveling cereal into my mouth.

When another hour has passed, I am good to go: ready to be physically active and socially engaged.

These may not be all my “conditions” but they are certainly key: solitude, reading, and writing.

Do you know what yours are? Care to share?

Author:

I’m a small town yoga teacher who says motherfucker a lot. I hate anything woo. I’m into neuroscience. And facts. I’ll lead the chanting of “om” sometimes, but it makes me feel awkward. I want to access flow states. As far as yoga helps me do that, I’m into it. Dopamine is my fave neurotransmitter. Don’t tell anyone I told you this.

6 thoughts on “The Return to Interiority

  1. For me I know one of my keys is meditation. No matter what is going on in my life everything seems to be solved or at least brought to light through it. I also have found that reading had become one of my passions. The kind of reading where your mind is opened and you learn new things. I look for that daily now. Currently I am reading A Mindful Nation by Ohio Congressman Tim Ryan. The other thing I love to do at the end of my day through the miracle of DVD is watch my favorite TV series that have long since aired. Right now, I am working my way through the series Felicity with Keri Russell.

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  2. Love this. I felt so overwhelmed and OCD after coming home from Houston. I think in the entire week, I was alone for an hour. I’m totally unfocused when I don’t have time to myself. Even if I’m staring at the computer, clicking on one thing or another, I feel like it’s time I have to myself.

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  3. That’s such a key management strategy- helping your employees understand what conditions are needed for them to do their best work, and then creating them. Apparently these “Zen and the Art of Business” people are on to something.

    Professionally, I need a lot of autonomy, and the ability to influence my environment. Personally… I need to be surrounded by passionate people to learn from and to recharge with. Making time for social things even after a 12 hour day when all I want to do is crash is key to keeping me energized.

    I’m always so happy to see you’ve posted! Hope you’re well.

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    1. Aleta,
      I couldn’t agree more! And although it is quite the challenge for me to find passionate people in my ‘hood,(such that when I do find them I glom onto them to an embarrassing degree) I’m always on the hunt! Seth Godin’s “Linchpin” is my bible for Art of Business. The new paradigm he articulates can’t come fast enough for me.

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