Relying on the internet to keep in touch with friends and family and to get work done while overseas earlier this year, taught me an interesting lesson. Or at least made a theory feel more real.
PUTTING A STOP TO MINDLESS SCROLLING
I often had really poor wifi. In fact, I am writing this while in Portugal and once again have poor wifi. I'm a pretty patient person and accept that slow connections happen; it is out of my control so I will sit and wait for things to take that bit longer to load up. But I was often online for a reason, and so the limited internet really made me think about what I wanted to do with my time. Where did I want to put my energy?
While waiting for something to load, I would automatically open up social media for an idle scroll. But as I waited for that to load up too, I realised that it wasn't where I wanted to use my limited internet capacity. It wasn't where I wanted to put my energy. So, I stopped.
PRIORITISING WHAT MATTERS
I then started to apply this to other areas of my life and work. I felt so lucky to have so many friends, as well as my family, messaging me frequently to find out how my travels were going, wondering what I was eating(!), wanting to see pictures of my view and check out my hotels, as well as share the details of their daily lives. I never felt lonely, because from halfway around the world, I felt so loved. I wanted to spend my time getting back to these people.
This also helped me to really start to let go of negative relationships I have had, because they weren't worth my energy anymore. I have a bad habit of dwelling on the past, but I realised that this wasn't where I wanted to put my energy, and every time my mind wandered to a negative place, I reminded myself of this and brought my mind gently back to the present.
Similarly when it came to thoughts about my health, and the unknown future, I decided that this wasn't where I wanted to put my energy either. I have long known that worrying about what may be, losing myself in 'what ifs', just isn't constructive. We all know the theory! But putting it into practice is another matter.
APPLYING MINDFUL PRIORITISING TO THE EVERYDAY
I still can't believe that slow internet, prompting the question 'where do I want to put my energy', is the thing that finally embedded all of this for me. But actually it's the best thing to happen, because every day there will be a moment where something takes a while to load, or I get stuck in a queue, or just have to wait for something. And each time that happens, instead of getting wound up or reaching for my phone to lose myself in a mindless scroll, I'll ask myself where I want to put my energy.
And so, I put this question to you today: where do YOU want to put YOUR energy? Or at least, where don't you want to put it? Imagine what you could do if you focused that energy on you, on your dreams, on your business. Mountains could be moved. Let me know if I can help at all.