I have spent the past month working through the Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. One of the most important practices I have started is taking time each morning to write what she calls “Morning Pages”. It has been transformational. It has been a life-line. It has been cathartic. It has helped me be still.
Each morning I fix my coffee, grab my favorite pen, sit in a chair that faces the bay and write with no agenda, no direction, no expectation. What I get back is a clearer vision of my own life and how I want to move forward in it.
Through “Morning Pages” I have been sorting out my relationship with technology. How it affects me, when it creates stress, when it is helpful, when it is harmful. I am still figuring it out, but one thing I have realized is that it has seeped into every aspect of my life, every day of the week.
There was a time in my life when I worked 5 days a week, and on the weekends unplugged. No emails from work, no Facebook notifications, no messages from LinkedIn. I had conversations around the dinner table and nobody checked their phones. I listened to music while I cleaned the house, washed clothes, and cooked. I planned weekend trips to the beach and did not post every move I made on Facebook. Instead I sat on a blanket in the sand and watched my children play at the water’s edge. I didn’t talk on a phone. I didn’t even read a book, I just sat and watched. I was busier than I am today, but I felt less stressed.
So, I have decided to quit some social technology on the weekends. No checking my email, no posting on WordPress or Facebook. No responding until Monday. I am striving to keep my weekends sacred. To quit being Pavlov’s salivating technology dog.
By unplugging from technology that can wait, I am going to use that time to talk and spend time with my family, go on trips, listen to music, take a walk, read, stare out the window.
Julia Cameron believes in the power of synchronicity. She writes, We all have…those dark and romantic notions that call to our deepest selves. When we answer that call, when we commit to it, we set in motion the principal that C. G. Jung dubbed synchronicity, loosely defined as a fortuitous intermeshing of events.
Yesterday I asked my children for some ideas of new music artists I could listen to. My daughter responded this morning and suggested a band called The Head and the Heart, a band that happens to have roots right here in Seattle. Below is the first song I listened to, called Let’s Be Still.
It is a beautiful song. It’s simple message is pure poetry. If you find your world spinning a bit too fast, take a moment and find your way to just be still. Who knows what magic you might find.