5. The River: Pause and Reflect

Good morning and welcome to your fifth meditation. How great that you are here, taking the time out of your day to dedicate to yourself. To slow down for a moment. To take a step back from the rushing current of life to reflect and consider how to always be becoming the best version of yourself. That’s right: always be becoming. Because we are always changing and evolving in a constant process of formation, along with the world around us. The current never stops; we don’t finally reach land. Rather we learn to navigate that current better. But it is so easy to simply be swept up by it, so that we feel that we are completely at its mercy. This is why taking these moments to pause and reflect is so important. Let’s take this analogy of the current one step further. Close your eyes. Inhale. Exhale.  Now imagine a rushing river through a rocky mountain pass. This is life. It is beautiful and dangerous, tranquil and turbulent. Now picture yourself in that river. What do you do? Do you thrash and fight the current blindly all the while expending all your energy so that these efforts become more and more difficult and costly? Or do you let the current take you so that you are able to calmly observe and appreciate all the beauty and danger in your midst. So that you only require a minimal expenditure of energy to avoid oncoming catastrophes and to direct yourself toward the safer, serener, and more splendid parts of the river. Sometimes we become convinced that the harder we work the more we will achieve or the happier we’ll be. We are unwilling to spare a moment to reflect because it is a moment that could be used to work toward our goals. But by regularly taking time to observe ourselves vis-à-vis our environments we become able to make conscious decisions that are motivated by an awareness of that environment and of our own needs within it. We no long simply react, but proact, which often leads us to a more favourable position from which future decisions become easier to make. We can never control the course of the river, but we can certainly direct ourselves within its current.

So don’t forget to pause. To reflect. It is so important. Some excellent ways to do this include reading, writing, making lists, and meditating. And of course, you’ve done it once today already by listening to this podcast. Way to go! Keep it up. You’re doing great. Have a wonderful day.

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