Sunday, October 12, 2008

Rilke says the answer is in the journey

I have learned over the years to refine my to do list to the point of including a ...breathe, Linda... note as a bit of a joke for myself. Before I was self employed, I traveled in a thirteen county area working as a consultant with a Mental Health Center. I made my car my office. As you can imagine this made for a pretty full back seat and trunk. I was a definite believer of the boy scout motto.

Traveling with me to lunch one day, My boss asked what I had in the back seat. It is just a film strip projector I shared.. He sighed with relief at my answer. Thank God , he replied, I was afraid it was a copier and you had figured out some way to plug into the cigarette lighter to make copies by the mile! I guess I was taking the concept of multitasking to a new level.

I have come to believe that multitasking is an illusion. The brain really can only attend to one thing at a time even if it is in overdrive. Being busy or too busy is a state of mind not an activity.

I expect I had learned somewhere in life to believe that we must be in demand to be creative and engaged? Maybe it seemed to me as if I had to be crazy busy to just make an impact or to justify that I was doing enough? I no longer believe that it is necessary or a good thing to be crazy busy.

I want to be the one who lives for the journey. I know it is my feelings and my thoughts that can make me feel crazy busy not the tasks. Of course I can get overwhelmed but I don't want to stay in that space any longer that it takes me to walk to my mental interior mirror and turn around with a new intention. I can let go of activities if I need to. I can change my circumstances. I can alter a lifestyle. My intention is to lead the most serene and lovely life possible with the one I have RIGHT NOW.

So toward that aim of serenity today, I walked through my office and lit the fall candles. I rearranged my favorite stuffed animals that have their imaginary lives there. They are of every personality and persuasion you can imagine and I like it that way. We are not a typical office I guess. We have it all I think. A gorilla who sings Wild Thing, A huge rabbit in a lovely cotton easter frock and even a popular Fred Flintstone .

I paused in the reception area to view the creative art made by children and adult clients and given to me over the years. I love just feeling those connections again in the moment. I have such a unique art collection. It makes me smile. I remember how blessed I am to be given the opportunity to do something I truly love doing. My intention is to express as much of the gratitude I feel as I can and to slow myself down in there here and now to fully experience what is offered in my life.

As my blogger friend Alex quoted today: Rilke says the answer is in the journey. So why the rush? I try to slow myself down all the time. Sometimes it works. I second that Alex.


Charli said...

Thank you for your thoughtful discussion, Linda.

It is so easy to rush rush rush. When our minds are still, we start to think and many of us cannot tolerate thinking.

I too feel the burning desire to write every day. But I think that drive might actually be a healthy one.

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is: I believe in journeys and every step they require.

I hope you can/do soon.

Marcus said...

Indeed, we are not nearly as good at multitasking as we like to believe! See:

OK...time to get back to doing something else! :)

Linda S. Socha said...

Wonderful to hear from you. I look forward to your posts and I am glad you have that burning desire...You are on a journey too and I send you thoughts for speed and wellness every time I think of your name. Thanks for your thoughts.

Marcus...wonderful to hear from you. Much thanks for the very relevant link you included in your comment. I have to love an advanced Librarian who participates!
Love Linda

Lucy said...

Just popped over to say hello, and find myself drawn in!

I enjoyed this post and look forward to coming back and reading more. I'll put you on my feeds to remind myself. Now I need to focus on my morning cup of tea!

Thanks for visiting mine.

Deb said...

Hi - thanks for leaving such a kind comment over at my place. I love it when friends drop in! Your office sounds perfect - unique artwork and stuffed animals -perfect! And the older I get the more I realize that the answer is the journey. I will be back soon ~ take care.

Linda S. Socha said...


Thanks for stopping by. Loved the way you arrange words!
I love visitors and I appreciate comments.


Thanks for stopping by. It was a pleasure to look through your blog. Come anytime!

The Sea Wind said...

Dear Linda,

Really nice contemplation! Here is the quote of Rilke that I have on my wall the past couple of weeks. I thought it is what you and Alex was discussing. What a coincidence!

"I beg you . . . . to have patience with
everything unresolved in your heart
and try to love the questions themselves
as if they were locked rooms or books
written in a foreign language. Don’t search
for the answers, which could not be given you
now, because you would not be able
to live them. And the point is, to live
everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps
then, some day far in the future, you will gradually
without ever knowing it,
live your way into the answers."
– Rilke

All the best,


Linda S. Socha said...


Thank you so much for your thoughts and comments. I very much enjoy them and I appreciate you sharing them.

Yes I love these kind of coincidences! You know Christine, I have come to believe that there really is no coincidence and that like mind and hearts/souls that are open to connection can find each other across whatever time and space barriers present. It can be almost like seeing s jeweled toned light in a mist or fog and just heading toward it mentally....I know ...sounds a little strange! I am ok about that! Keep me posted on our travels!!

Writer on Board said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
FlyingRabbit said...

I'm on the journey to seek my American dream. I don't know why I like America so much! Or I can say why I'm so eager to explore the world. I'm so excited to meet different people and experience different cultures. Do you still remember the video about a man dacing all around the world. That touches me a lot.
I'm busy these days and perhaps even the whole year. Now, every step I walk I just cann't let it slow down. I must accelerate and on.

Linda S. Socha said...

Rabbit...(i.e. Terence)

Good to see you stopped by! You will be here in the U.S. and you and Charli and I will celebrate...CONGRATULATIONS! I know you will do well this year...You will improve and I believe it may feel great! You know it is all good....I appreciate you.

Ezekiel Barzillai Smythe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ezekiel Barzillai Smythe said...

I liked this post a lot. I find the whole tortoise and hare analogy meaningful year after year as I continue to be a permanent non-multi-tasker. Slow and steady wins the race!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Thanks for visiting us and leading me here! Edward and I have enjoyed perusing your interesting blog this evening and shall return!

You are welcome over at our place anytime!

jiggins said...


I do sometimes find myself overwhelmed with the daily "to-do" list. Recently, one of my buddies was headed out to run his errands for the day.. he stopped by to see his father and showed him his list for the afternoon. His father shook his head and seemed exhausted with the idea of trying to get that long list of things accomplished in one afternoon.

It makes me laugh, and I reference the incident often.. when I think about my daily do-list and the ultimate procrastination that follows. I work to 'multi-task' in my work area and get all things done that need to be done. I -scan- - as mentioned in the NPR link you have linked.. trying to do what needs to be done- and trying to suppress the rest. AHHH! I love this post. I did not miss the point.. I just resonated with this part of it. Thanks! See ya around Linda.

Cory said...

Linda, im glad you commented on my blog as it has lead me to yours. I was reading this entry and thinking yip, thats me, thats how my life is now. Im on such a fast pace i cant keep up with myself, and as for my car, it too is my home recently.

You learned to slow down and enjoy the pace, i hope i can follow suit, for i know im missing out on so much recently.

Your blog is wonderful and interesting and i will be back.

Take care fo now :)

Jessica the Minx said...

Ive just started in Mental Health and Ive never known such a rushed hectic work

I related to your post... multi-tasking is now assumed which I think is fine for management as they dont have to employ as many people.

Tis a good reminder to stop and smell the roses

Abbey said...

Hi Linda... like Jess, Im in mental health and agree its hectic...Ive done this for years now and am able to detatch and maintain my own self wasnt always that way and multi tasking was my norm, trying to appear more capeable than capeable...

A Buddist friend taught me exactly what you are saying... tis the journey that much ive missed by zooming through life like a sports car instead of a Kombi...

but it often takes reminders from fellow bloggers to slow down... great post...ta

ps thank god I havnt got a copier in the car ha ha