March 20, 2024

A Reminder for When we feel Disconnected.

 

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“It’s not that I’m in a funk, or that I’m not happy. I feel…” My friend searched for a word then gave up.

“Like you’re not even in your own body sometimes?” I ask.

“Yes!” She agreed.

I’ve been experiencing a similar feeling. I knew I wasn’t fully present. It had become common for me to miss part of a story someone was telling because my mind wandered to what time it was, or where I needed to be next. I couldn’t pinpoint where this feeling of disconnect was coming from.

What I did know is that I felt like a robot. Once I finished one task, I moved on to the next feeling numb. I grimaced at my desk calendar littered with handwritten notes on nearly every day of the week. Reminders of work deadlines, doctor’s appointments, sports tryouts, and birthdays each in their own color creating a rainbow of chaos.

Trying to fit in a workout, which normally helped me feel more centered, had also started to become a chore. One afternoon after a workout in which my exhausted body couldn’t perform the way I expected, I lay frustrated on the carpeted floor in my basement. The cool from the concrete beneath made its way up in between the fibers of the rug. I could feel my muscles start to untighten.

Focusing on the cool against my back, my mind started to get quiet. I concentrated on the cooling sensation from below. The root of my disconnect became glaringly obvious—when life is busy and full, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is fulfilling. My mind and my heart were not in alignment.

Though my logical mind prided itself on a carefully organized day to accomplish as much as I could, this did little for my emotional mind. Simply put, scrubbing the toilet after a long day at work didn’t bring joy to my heart. Of course, I understood chores need to be completed and appointments attended. The problem was that the pace at which I was racing through life left no time to connect with myself, with others, or do things (like writing) which made my heart full.

“I’ve been trying to get down to the heart of the matter.”~ Don Henley

I decided my first step should be to try to slow the day down. I started that afternoon by eliminating distractions and noise. I turned off the radio while driving my son to his doctor’s appointment. I was surprised to find there were some things on his mind too; he simply needed the uninterrupted time to ask questions.

I didn’t feel like just the chauffeur that afternoon shuttling my child around. It didn’t feel like we were rushing to yet another appointment. There was a deep connection in our conversation that became the centerpiece for our afternoon. The focus of getting to the office visit faded to the background as we enjoyed the journey of getting there much more.

The heart of the matter is it’s the heart that matters most. So if we ever find ourselves feeling detached from ourselves, or from someone we care about, let’s take some time to reconnect at the heart.

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