zen week, tasks 44-51

Here are my thoughts on last week’s assignments…

Assignment 44: Try living without a car.

At least four days a week I do not drive anywhere, I walk to work. One day a week I have to run errands that I would otherwise be unable to accomplish without a car, and a couple times a month I have to drive for business. Part of me does wonder if this would be a more feasible notion, living without a car, if I were closer to reliable public transportation.

Assignment 45: Find a creative outlet for self-expression.

I love this one! For me, creativity frequently starts in the kitchen – trying new recipes, ingredients or creating familiar dishes. I also enjoy plants, knitting, coloring mandalas and writing this blog. About once a month we have craft night at our house and me and the hubby work on our projects or a shared project, in the same room of the house. We may be quiet while we’re working, or chat about any topic that comes up. It’s a really nice way to spend an evening and a much better way to connect than just flicking the television on.

Assignment 46-47: Simplify your goals & Single-task.

One goal, one task. I’ve been doing this more lately and on one hand I feel a little behind in some things, yet I am accomplishing that one thing from beginning to end. Multi-tasking is stressful, and less productive. But dang is it a hard habit to break!

Assignment 48: Simplify your filing system.

There’s a part of me that gets nervous about throwing documents out. What if I need those later? What if I’m required to keep this? This year is the big year for purging documents from my work filing cabinet — I’m only required to hang on to these particular folders for seven years. My little business has made it past seven years and it is time to sort through and shred files. From here on out I will pull files every quarter and feed them through the shredder. Eeeps! Exciting! Scary! 🙂

Assignment 49: Develop equanimity.

Yes. This is something I have been meditating on for the last ten days.

Assignment 50: Reduce your consumption of advertising.

Here’s what I’ve been doing for a while now:

  • stop the mail-order catalogs from coming to the house – just call the number on the back of the catalog and ask them to stop sending you their catalog.
  • use the tv commercial break as a chance to swap a load of laundry, rinse some beans to soak overnight, jot off a quick email, or plan next week’s meals.
  • listen to college radio stations that don’t play commercials.
  • read a book instead of a magazine.

Assignment 51: Live life more deliberately.

My absolute favorite work days are those when I am not rushing around, cramming ten thousand things into the work hours. This is another bad working habit to break. When someone asks what I did at work today my reply is usually: “I saw clients and sent out an email campaign.” But really it went more like this: “I gave relief to someone with terrible neck pain, then helped a busy mom find an hour of tranquility. After that I worked on an email campaign with copy on health tips and upcoming wellness events, cleared out my inbox, had a purposeful snack, meditated over tea. In my next session my client discovered a new location where she was holding tension and she sought my advice on stress management techniques. I rounded out my day with a young athlete complaining of discomfort in the upper back and legs now that sports season is upon us. Ya’ know, just another rewarding day at the office, how ’bout you?

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