I love photographing surfers. On this particular day, I could see them through the camera lens under a dull, overcast sky. The reason I like taking their photographs is that there is something very purposeful about their stride. They go out with hope of catching that exhilarating wave, the one that rises high, curls, and comes all the way in to the shore. They walk back to their car, spent, exhausted but having achieved what they set out to do.
Each morning I wake and visualise the foaming ocean. The blue of sky and sea. The screech of seagulls. The smell of kelp. And at the edge of that shore, like a surfer I watch and wait, then I plan what I am able and hope to achieve that day. The thoughts take shape and become an itemised plan and my day emerges carefully thought out. Without it, I would be rudderless.
One of my most prized possessions at the moment is an hourglass timer. There is a brutal reality in each grain of sand that makes up the hour. I no longer have a whole beach at my feet and maybe, none of us do, but guided by the hourglass, I have never been more productive. My footsteps never been more purposeful.
For me, living with intent within the parameters that life (or some may say, destiny/fate) dictates, is a gift one gives to self. It is self-care. It is self-realisation. It is self-discovery. In a nutshell, it is self-actualisation.
Six weeks into spring, it feels like we have had the longest winter. I woke to rain again today. Right now, a sliver of sunlight cuts across the back yard and it gave me reason to write again.
Just Enough Winter was full of drama awake under skies ablaze the sudden thunder cringe feeling, rolled up within furrowed in the winter dark that place, in my heart hope seeds take hold, in spring
Alone in a darkened hotel room this week I reflected that I have a curious mix of stamina and hope. Having suffered another minor RA flare up while away I sent my colleague an email late at night saying I was unwell but would be at work the next day. I ended the email with, “I will NOT allow this to get to me”. The pain subsided around 1 am and I slept either because it did, or I was exhausted from it. The important thing is, I got to work on time and, energised by my ability to do so, I worked as I usually do.
In a roundabout way this feeling of hope came about when reading about the Edo Period in Japan, a time when ‘just enough’ or sustainability seemed to underpin peace. I have endured days, weeks, months panicked by the thought of the future where my lifestyle of living fully, may be curtailed. But when thinking about the concept of ‘just enough’, I’ve found I don’t need spades of hope each day, I just need enough to get by. This thinking has brought enormous peace. There is no feeling of wanting more, or thinking, what if … I do what I have to do with whatever resources I have in that given moment. There’s a certain stillness, a calm this brings and yet, there is momentum too, that helps me move forward.
May you find something in your day that is ‘just enough’, too.