Time Leadership Chronicles #1: "Catching Up"Dec 23, 2018
This morning I was thinking about the urge to “catch up” and what I am "behind with", now that I’ve recovered from the extraction of my deeply infected back molar tooth and chronic septicaemia from the poison that it was pumping into my body. That tooth has been a problem for years, and increasingly this year. From the lack of sleep due to pain, to diminishing fitness due to chronic tiredness, to lack of energy to make things happen (very unlike my more usual self!), the months leading up to the extraction were an ongoing story of grinding to a halt.
Today, it’s been a week since I realised that I was all better. A week since my writing muse returned. A week since my urge to make things happen returned. And it’s been a week of working out where I was when my health started to go downhill. So the “need” to “catch up” has reared its stress-inducing head. As it always does after a period of illness.
Can I do my come-back differently this time?
At my Rotary club’s Christmas breakfast earlier this month, the thought that “hope is not of the past, it is of the present and the future” was mentioned during the Christmas address. Is that relevant here? Perhaps…What if, instead of now laying out a path of catching up on all the things I’ve missed out on while I’ve been ill, I am simply thankful for each day of health from today? What if, instead of focussing on all the things I didn’t get done while I was ill, I simply return to where I was when I became ill and start from there? What if, instead of my hope remaining in my past when it can't generate anything helpful, I simply allow the hope that lives inside me to emerge and flourish in making a difference today?
Perhaps, given this new understanding of coming back, the things on my to do list during my period of illness will happen more kindly. Decisions made when I was ill might not look like good ones now that I’m better.
In this space there is no need for “catching up”. None at all. There is simply being present for the present. And here, on how I can use what I have, right now, to make a difference to life on our precious planet Earth.
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