How do we shift from a world where rampant mental illness pushes people to the limits of their humanity to a world where we take good care of one another?
Could it be as simple as breathing??
Self-reflection may be simple, but it’s not easy.
I cherish my time for self-reflection. Without it, I tend to stay in a stressful loop. In a moment I might start to go down a rabbit hole, thinking about an interaction that I had or have to have. Without time to process these thoughts fully, they just stay in a loop.
There is something I am supposed to get from these repeating thoughts, which is why my brain keeps showing me it. I need to reveal it’s meaning, process my emotions about it, and then put it behind me as completed. If not, my energy gets sapped. I find it hard to focus and all tasks take longer. I may even procrastinate or escape into TV or social media. Still that thought loops.
It’s like when you are running late for something and you keep going back to your house for different things you forgot and it just gets later and later. Ever do that? Be in such a rush that you forget important things and it causes you to be even later?
I notice that if tasks and obligations, including my cherished kids and clients, keep me from giving these thoughts my full attention for a while, I start to resent them. I get short tempered. I set up boundaries to protect myself. I have more freedom to do so because I am self-employed. Still, when I accept work, I make a commitment and that commitment has to be fulfilled. I don’t always see a busy time coming and I get stuck
However, companies need to adopt a self-care culture to allow their people to grow and develop not just skill wise, but in their consciousness. Our planet actually depends on it!
Otherwise, we get unconscious producers in power, focused only on producing hard results without consideration of consequences. This explains situational greed, a neuroscience concept I introduced in a previous blog in which the brain starts to rewire itself to pursue more power and/and possessions, sometimes even becoming addicted to the dopamine release of acquiring more power and/or possessions. Without being able to regularly take time, which becomes even harder as you take on more responsibility and authority, this can go unchecked and lead to a host of toxic conditions and detrimental consequences.
Without that time, I could not have written this!
A balance, however elusive, appears to be the more accurate place from which to make critical decisions that impact many.
Not work-life balance, but production and reflection balance. An employer can’t assume its employees are doing this at home.
This is a generalization, but often those at the top of the income chain employ the assistance of others to take care of admin/housekeeping, even child rearing. But do they use the time that is freed from those tasks for reflection? Or, do they use that time to produce or feed ego?
Most other people, including top producers, are going home and attacking a busy kid activity and homework schedule plus a home care task list. Then they zone out consuming media because they are mentally and emotionally exhausted – another generalization, I realize.
Still, I think it’s fair to say the general workforce is not in the habit of making time for self-reflection, and if they are, they doing it incompletely and getting stuck in the loop I described above.
The loops below are a much better model for conscious growth, whether you are a leader or a producer:
- Consumption – Make plans based on new insights, illuminations, teachings
- Reflection – Consider how people and planet will be impacted directly and indirectly
- Production – Set goals and intentions and execute
- Reflection – Examine direct and indirect impacts, as well as own performance relative to higher self
The key is self-intimacy (into-me-I-see). Not just asking how was it, evaluating in terms of results, profits, etc., but asking how was I. Sometimes the answers aren’t good, and the ego doesn’t like them.
But the higher self, the one who wants to continually evolve into a better and better person, a better leader and a more positive influence on the people around them, needs them.
Coincidentally, I came across this warning signs list this morning. I thought someone might need this more than music, so I’m sharing it.