How you start your day determines how you end your day.
A typical start of the day for many people in the modern digital age is stumbling out of bed, grabbing the i-Phone to check for important emails with the news channels blaring negativity in the background.
Are you in control of your own agenda?
It means external forces are setting the agenda. You are not in control. Your thoughts and emotions are running the rollercoaster of stressful thoughts and fears. Without a set anchor point or agenda for the day you will be bouncing around like a cork in the ocean.
Learning from the monastic traditions
The monastic traditions were very much aware of the inner demons and had set rituals for the day. In the Benedectine Order, the monastery rule dating back to about 500 AD, prayer, service, study, and physical labor were all essential parts of spiritual growth.
The monk Benedict was convinced that God had given Man the freedom of choice with the heart a constant battleground of choosing between good and evil. To avoid the temptation of evil the monks committed themselves to four hours of prayer, four hours of studying scripture, and manual labor. In the Order there are fixed times for rising in the morning, prayer, study, work, break times, and recuperation.
Such a disciplined life made the monasteries the research laboratories and centers of learning for hundreds of years. We know from modern neurological research that such structures teach the brain from falling into procrastination and the pitfalls of dark thought. It in the quiet moments that we have the “aha” inspirations.
Determining your own agenda
What is your first thought of the day? Are you being overwhelmed by all the negativity and external conditions caused by the pandemic? Be aware that no matter how bad your personal situation might be, there are always at least three things a day you can be grateful for. There will always be persons better off and worse off than you are. Meditate and concentrate on inhaling and exhaling. By focusing on your breathing you are bringing yourself back to the present moment. What are you feeling? Anger, sadness or fear? Accept that feeling. It is the way it is. Once you have accepted how you feel you can start emotionally shifting to another emotional level: Joy, abundance, confidence, courage, and trust.
We live in a world of polarity. The forces of yin and yang are in constant flux with the universal force moving in a cycle comparable to the seasonal changes. There is a time for expansion and growth and there is a time for withdrawal and recuperation. COVID-19 is teaching mankind to take a pause. It is a time of introspection and realignment, comparable to the “winter of the soul”.
It is a good time to realign your own personal agenda, starting by creating a structure for your day. It will make a huge difference on your stress-coping strategy during this time of crisis.
Reino Gevers – Author. Mentor. Speaker
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