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A weekly kick-off e-message from Katherine Eitel

to breathe life back into your practice, your team, and you!


October 10, 2011

The Future

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I heard a great quote recently by Aimee Mann:  "If it's not happening now... it's not happening."

Unlike any other animal on this planet, humans can understand the concept of the future. A blessing and a curse, I think. Our big, powerful brains constantly desire to create a better life, an improved circumstance for ourselves and because we can conceive it, we set goals, ask questions, contemplate strategies, and move ourselves forward... for better or worse.

Today - NowOf course, the downside is that same imagination that conceives improved circumstances and creates amazing inventions, also envisions mental movies of the future which are not to our liking causing us to worry, fret, hesitate, sometimes completely shutdown.

Other animals live primarily in the present moment. Their past experiences form them and they certainly strategize their hunting or foraging but only in response to their immediate needs.

We are the weird and wonderful mix of the two. Our minds imagine it and our bodies react like the rest of our animal kin. Adrenaline rushes when an animal feels frightened or desperate. In the human animal, this can be real or imagined.

Fall is the busiest time in my business every year. As I write this, I'm in the thick of it. It's easy for me to get overwhelmed and freaked out I won't be able to get it all done and meet all my obligations while still maintaining the life I want. I often catch myself imagining a disastrous end to a day, a week, a month.

This week, join me in heightening your awareness of how you are feeling and determine whether it is in response to a real, immediate reality or an imagined one. As you think about or imagine the future, whether it's the next hour or the next decade, if you experience negative emotions such as fear, frustration, worry, resignation, remember that if it's not happening now... it's not happening. Bring yourself back to what is happening and practice retooling your expectation of what's coming. Doing this, I find I am able to calm and center myself and hold on to a more positive expectation... and the best part... not only do I apparently keep creating a better and bigger future but I spend much happier times here in the present.

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"Learning to live in the present moment is part of the path of joy."

~ Sarah Ban Breathnach


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