Karen Horneffer-Ginter
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A Little Trick to Find the Time

There were those days nearly everyday when my youngest child was in high school and I began care taking and assisting my 90-year-old mother. It was often a constant squeeze play and there was never ever enough time, I felt exhausted and on edge. I was gaining weight from just grabbing food on the run and I felt most days like I was coming down with a cold; a constant fatigue.

I stopped going to my group activities and worked at doing my spiritual practice in-between, I stopped going to the gym and tried to make do at home and by walking the dog, and I finally stopped working my part time job and I was still exhausted and now had no discretionary funds.

One early morning, I found myself unable to sleep and overwhelmed. I got dressed and left the house for a dawn walk around the lake. I was actually crying as I was walking along in the near dark when another walker asked if she could join me. I looked closely and realized it was the Governor making this request. We walked the 3 miles and she asked me comforting questions until we rounded the last curve of the home stretch. Her final words to me were to share this life rule: "Whenever you think you do not have the time is when you need IT the most."

Now this Governor was no slouch, an environmental lawyer, wife, Mother of 2 daughters, and breast cancer survivor. I took her words to heart and worked out what they would mean for me. After 10 years, I start with her words before I begin any planning or scheduling and have added a modification: [B["What works best for my wellbeing?"

I got myself back to the gym and my supportive friends in the class I was taking, I took custody of that time slot. I needed the contacts with friends and I needed the exercise. I started carrying a small "cool" bag and kept my food for the day with me, when I did stop to eat, I made it a meditation experience and savored the nourishment on several levels. I ate alone so as to not be distracted or become unfocused. Instead of keeping a gratitude journal, I kept a small notebook of things that needed taking care off, so I could take those items out of my mind. When I found myself worrying something, I had to think of 5 things I was grateful for right away and say them out loud. My spiritual self was renewed, not just once a week but on a daily, sometimes hourly basis.

I had time for writing in a journal and letting out my rants, cares, and frustrations. I allowed my friends to "help" me or listen and I turned off the taking care of them switch. Yes, I lost a few folks along the way, and my mother gained a few after her spine fractured and she had surgery: volunteers who came and read or just visited.

The Governor's rule and my addendum, allowed me to change the script of my day and my life; it opened the door for all the time I needed – every minute fully usable and celebrated. When I thought I needed to drop my exercise and my spiritual practice; I realized I needed those things most, when they became my priority, the remaining tasks began to work out in alternative ways. The changes became invigorating. I am no longer so isolated by my work and requirements, time is on my side, and my re-visioning indicates that I took care of my well being first.

Wise women need to share, we need to talk more and find the best in each other. If the Governor can encounter a stranger and change a life and still get her exercise – we all can do it!

Whenever you think there is no time, that is when you need IT the most.

What works best for your wellbeing?

Patricia considers herself to be a Change Artist and she shares wonderful wisdoms and book reviews at www.patriciaswisdom.com.

Read more from Patricia Hamilton at her website.

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May, 2013:  A Little Trick to Find the Time

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