The Art of Living is Simple

Anything that lives, moves. Anything that moves does so in as efficient a manner as possible.

So, the pace of our world is quickening— as the speed of technology quickens; as more wealth accrues; as ideas, services & products are spread from Alaska to the Himalaya.

With speed comes more. And most of us believe more is better.

With greater and greater speed to our lives, more becomes ALL. And soon enough, the choice becomes “all or nothing”. Thus, speed wins, for fear that we’ll be left with nothing.

Speed often brings with it a breakdown in the art of living— inaccuracy, avoidable mistakes, clumsiness, short attention span, apathy, disregard for the moment. Conceptions of time and space get smaller to accommodate the more and more we have to do/be/have/get/like/trade/watch/learn/teach/know.

What speed does not offer is more time.

No one is in control of how much time he or she has on the planet. But we do have control over how we approach and use it. If I approach from the belief that I don’t have enough — always searching for more — then I regard time as something I don’t have enough of, inspiring me to speed through my life before time runs out.

I’ve been in that mindset for years — couldn’t figure out how to move through my life with pleasure, for fear of running out of time to “get it all done.”

What I’ve been learning —oh so slowly—is that if instead I believe I have all I need, I can take pleasure in what unfolds out of each moment. By seeing time as plentiful, I can slow to a pleasurable pace and still yet achieve everything I’m meant to, though maybe not in the ways i expect to.

Including wellness.

The same rules for time apply here: I have control over how I approach and use my wellness.

If I approach it from a place of lack, I won’t believe in my ability to heal myself. Instead, I’ll hand that power over to trained professionals whose prescribed methods may or may not work for me.

If I approach from a place of abundance, I begin with the belief that I am well, and any healing that takes place will be infused with my inherent powers to heal myself. This belief empowers my ability to create a healing lifestyle that incorporates my intuitive knowing as well as the support of those trained in health & wellness practices.

The art of living is the simple part. The rest of it’s distraction.

Distraction arrives when my fears and insecurities encourage me to speed up and get more.

But what if I didn’t?

What if I slowed to the rhythm of my own breath?

What if I followed the circuitous flow of my blood and ignored the finish line up ahead?

What if I waited to fully experience a moment before offering a response that felt honest, idiosyncratic, and compassionate?

What if I listened to my own body’s knowing, before creating my truth?

Amy Baumgarten