I was trying to call a friend of mine the other day when I got a busy tone from her line. A busy tone is not something you hear every day so I tried again; I just couldn't get through. I saw her later on and asked her about it. She said that her husband could not stand the idea of call waiting; he thought that was rude to just bump people off for the next best thing or phone call in this situation. I have thought statement a lot since the day I heard it.
The Denver Waldorf School is hosting a 5 class parent education series. I’ve attended 3 classes so far all which have been fantastic. Dr. Adam Blanning was the host of last night’s talk about how we keep ourselves and our children healthy in a world that wants us to consume without end. Think about media and how much of it we are exposed to. Many things come at us so fast that we barely have time to digest them all which leaves us over stimulated and tired. Probably the most interesting point that was discussed last night was that of our 12 senses (not 6 like I thought we had). These senses are word, sound, temperature, vision, smell, taste, touch, vestibular, proprioception, life, I and thought. I am not going to go into all of those senses but what I found fascinating was that sense of “I”; that of the human being or individual. Dr. Blanning talked about how important that sense was to have when engaging in an activity with your kids especially under the age of 9. For example, reading a book to a child has the sense of “I” for your child but listening to a story on tape does not. The sense of "I" can be thought of as human interaction.
I thought about how important that sense of “I” is for adults as well if not more important. That connection we make with another human being is tremendously essential for our well-being. Most of the activities we do are fast-paced and hurried because there doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day; we pay at the pump, we eat while driving, make all our phone calls while running errands and so on. Didn’t it feel good when you had to pay inside for gas which allowed you that essential human contact with the attendant? I’m not saying that these conveniences aren’t great to have but they do come at a price.
I was doing a reading this morning for someone when we got interrupted by someone on her end. Her energy got scattered and my energy got scattered after that interruption. My boundaries are very clear when I’m giving someone a reading; I meditate prior to the reading, I disable call-waiting on my phone and I close my door. This practice guarantees that I am fully present for the person and myself.
If you are having coffee with a friend don’t answer your phone when it rings, if you’re working-out don’t try to read your book, if you’re talking to someone on the phone don't type an email at the same time, when you pick your kids up from school realize that it’s their turn to have your attention, dinner with your family is the time for everyone to sit around the table and share their day … and so on. I know you’re all nodding your head yes. Trust me if you allow yourself the gift of being present you will feel an overwhelming sense of well-being and balance.
I don’t know that I am ready to disable call-waiting on my phone permanently but I can tell you that I won’t be taking that other phone call quite as easily.
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In the present!