Technically, I suppose that is hard to do. I can’t really avoid the person whose body I live in, whose mind is my own. I am here, with me, all of the time. And yet, I notice that I am avoiding myself.
What does this look like? Finding many emails to respond to, a FB newsfeed to peruse, beginning to research possible plans for the summer, checking off tasks on a to-do list for church. All of these things keep me away from myself, keep me away from asking the question that gets all of my blog posts going.
“What’s here for me right now?”
It’s a question that looks very mild, very simple. Don’t be deceived by its simplicity - it is, in fact, very powerful. Noticing that I have squirmed my way out of sitting with that question until just this moment, I can’t help but wonder what I am avoiding.
So, I ask myself what I am avoiding in the spirit of curiosity rather than rebuke. And I am patient with the silence.
And then I smile. Because it is the silence that I have been avoiding. As I move myself into silence, I will leave you with the words of David Whyte, from his book Consolations:
In silence, essence speaks to us of essence itself and asks for a kind of unilateral disarmament, our own essential nature slowly emerging as the defended periphery atomizes and falls apart. As the busy edge dissolves we begin to join the conversation through the portal of a present unknowing, robust vulnerability, revealing in the way we listen, a different ear, a more perceptive eye, an imagination refusing to come too early to a conclusion, and belonging to a different person than the one who first entered the quiet.
Jessica Curtis is a professional coach who helps people cultivate intention and live from a place of meaning and authenticity. If you think you could benefit from working with Jessica or want to invite her to work with your group, reach out to start a conversation.