Waking up in the early hours of August 1st, I had this visceral sense of the calendar shifting accompanied by the thought "Half the summer months are gone!" It was the oddest sensation. Like a pie being cut in half and taken away. Over the next few days choruses of 'Where has the summer gone? 'I can't believe how fast time is going.' Summer is going so quickly.' 'Where is the time going?' echoed my experience. It seems people are saying this more than in years past. Is summer time really going that much more quickly? I asked myself.
Every morning before I begin to journal I listen to my mantel clock. It's clear, with each tick-tock, that one can't speed it up nor slow it down (unless it's getting time to rewind!). Time has a steady beat. I also have experienced when deeply engaged by something, time seems to expand. No, neither of these seems to fit this general feeling of summer fleeting. So what is it?
One clue is in my weekly reflections. On Sunday I ask myself several questions.
~ What are 2 things I've learned this week? and
~ In what ways was my week good/ better?
This requires a casting back over the events of my week. More often than I care to admit I can't specifically remember what I did or what day I participated in something. Was it Tuesday or Wednesday? Have even gone back to look at my daytimer to refresh my memory! It appears while I walk and talk my way through the day(s), I am not always in my body. Looking at my 'do's' to complete over the summer is a part of this. No sooner have I crossed something off my list, then my eye and energy are down the road organizing the next thing. Time off is 'planned' with places to go and explore. The planning accompanied by how will I get items done after returning. Habits like tuning into the news, which I do far too much of, distracts me from the now as I speculate on the next bit of craziness that may occur.
You see when I'm not beating myself up for some perceived bit of foolishness, I live mainly in the future. A minute, hour, week, season down the road. Am convinced my plotting and planning 'ensures' I won't repeat any foolishness. It feels productive, purposeful and keeps me 'in control'. Also gets me nods and affirmation from those around me. Yay! they 'get me.' What it doesn't do is allow me to enjoy the moment before me. When you add up all these moments whole swatches of my days are 'lost'.
As a result I am making an effort to check in with my physical presence periodically throughout the day. 'Where am I?' 'Can I feel my feet, hands?' 'What am I noticing in the space around me?' 'How am I breathing?' Exhale!
Is your summer going extraordinarily fast? Where are you spending your time?
Bring yourself into the present. 'What are you noticing right now?'