Wednesday, August 24, 2011

In the Moment

Do not dwell in the past,
do not dream of the future,
concentrate the mind on the present moment.

Can I just start this by saying how incredible my new school work environment is??
Everyone is warm, friendly, welcoming, understanding and helpful. There are inspirational quotes above many of the corridor's doors. There is a positive aura in the air. Creating an atmosphere to enhance learning has manifested itself within the building in which I work. It is amazing.
Then I received my first EFAP newsletter (the acronyms within this job are driving me crazy ... I had to Google these initials to find out that they mean "Employee and Family Assistance Program"). It is full of motivational quotes, along with an interesting and well written article on 'Being Present'.
Being present. Focusing on one thing at a time without allowing your mind wander. Reining in your thoughts and consciously bringing yourself into the moment you are living.
It was ironic that as I read this article, I had a Student Handbook on my desk which I was trying to absorb. I had my ears tuned in to pick up absolutely anything that may be useful for me to know. I was fervently making notes to try and ease me through this new transition. I was working on/staring at phone lists trying to become familiar with the names of about 115 teachers and staff at the school. I had another book at my side where I can match up pictures of the staff that I have met with their name. I had yet another booklet with all of the courses offered as well as all of the subsidiary branches and services that our school has to offer.
I read through the '5 Steps to Being Present' without being present. At all.
I walked home that afternoon and tried to focus 100% of my thoughts to what I was seeing, feeling and hearing as I strolled for fifteen short minutes. I failed. I may have lasted ten seconds at a time. My mind and thoughts are straying off into a thousand different directions and my ability to focus is next to nil.
I forwarded this newsletter home but I haven't made time to sit still and be present enough to fully absorb what it is telling me. Yet.
As I wrote this, I realized that there is one place where I am in the moment. Most of the time. It is in the dance studio - most especially during my private dance lesson where I am (almost) 100% focused on what I am doing and how I am doing it. It is during that one half hour of the week, where I am in the moment. I never realized it before, but that is most likely why I find my dance lessons are such a vital part of my life.
I am presently working in an environment which I find absolutely intoxicating. The uplifting people and atmosphere within the school system is exactly what I needed. Anytime in my life ... but most especially right now.
I took a leap of faith and believed that this was possible. I am now living the dream. All that I must do, is learn to live in the moment and appreciate each and every step as I make my way down this new path.
When I dance, I dance;
when I sleep, I sleep;
yes, and when I walk alone in a beautiful orchard,
if my thoughts drift to far-off matters for some part of the time for some other part I lead them back again to the walk,
the orchard,
to the sweetness of this solitude,
to myself.
~ Montaigne

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