The Glorious Now
Pull yourself back from the hurry and the worry.
You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island of opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land; there is no other life but this. — Henry David Thoreau
Each day, upon waking, the sumptuous banquet of exquisite moments manifests before your eyes, and are often promptly ignored. Time is limited you tell yourself. I have to do: A, B, C, … Commitments and obligations block the Way. All the while, everyday miracles tantalize the real, unadorned you. You come to believe the life unlived with its heady perfume and sensuous silhouettes has to remain an unrealized dream. But that does not have to be. You can rediscover that lost land of youth. The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it. — J. M. Barrie
Do not live to work; work to live. In physics, work is force times the distance through which it acts. You are paid to expend energy over work-time. If you have to force yourself every day to do that work — the job is toxic. If you mentally carry that job with you outside work, you need to refocus your priorities. Do not allow the payment of money for your time to bleed off your life-energy to the point you feel deflated and hollow. A job is simply a means to an end, and it should not be the end of you.
Of course you should take your job seriously, and perform it to the best of your ability. But, unless you are the owner of the business, the job is not your life’s work. It simply is not. Part of your life’s work is appreciating the miracles of: you, those you love, and the miraculous world around you. Miracles abound in this world of ours. We separate ourselves from them — not them from us. This glorious now is life. There is no equivalence between the importance of work and the significance of life. Miracles are not contrary to nature but only contrary to what we know about nature. — St. Augustine
Now is the time to live. Living in the real world does not have to mean setting aside your true nature in order to accept the artificial creation of the workplace. The eight hour day is a creation of the Industrial Revolution. People worked fewer hours hundreds of years ago. For instance, in medieval Europe peasants worked from dawn to dusk, (16 hours in summer and 8 in winter). But their day was interrupted by: breakfast, lunch, afternoon nap, dinner, plus morning and afternoon refreshments. And a third or more of the year was given over to holidays and merrymaking. (The Overworked American: The Unexpected Decline of Leisure, by Juliet B. Schor). Drop the pretense that your stressful schedule benefits you in any more ways than financially.
So many people have extended their work week, and never take the vacation time they are due. Slow down the frantic, rushing pace from here to there. There will always be more to do. Pull yourself back from the hurry and the worry. Remind yourself of what is truly important to you. Reclaim the splendor of living your life. Reclaim the bounty of happy miracles. There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. — Albert Einstein