One of the simplest changes that I have made to my life has opened up new opportunities for me to interact with the world and those around me who share my physical, mental, intellectual and spiritual space.
I have noticed that by making sure I have chunks of quiet time – usually for me on the 45 minute drive to work and again on the drive home, I have created a clear separation between work and home so that as far as is possible the occasional pressures and strains of both are kept separate and distinct and allow me to get in touch with William – that’s me!
For many years I did not know who William was – I had a vague sense of who he used to be and was often terrified of what he might become, but recognising him in the present was lost in a maelstrom of pressure, anxiety, anger, controlling behaviours and deep pain.
In making myself available as I eat my evening meal, I have noticed that there are opportunities for my wife and adult children to open up to me. It is a thrilling sensation.
Last week my wife began to tell me about some concerns she has around the happiness of one of our children. I sat and listened. I was then told some history that I have not been made aware of. I sat and listened.
As I listened, I felt a pang of guilt about the load my wife has previously had to bear, but I sat and listened – I didn’t apologise or explain myself, it wasn’t about me, I sat and listened.
As I listened, I sensed that something should be done to assist my child, but this is the profound thing that I have noticed the most, I have taken in the message but I have not reacted to it or tried to resolve it.
The problem is not mine to solve but I know that I am in a far calmer place to listen should my child ever decide to raise their concerns with me, and there might be a time when having made myself accessible, I am able to gently introduce a topic.
So, William is no longer the reactive, controlling, angry man he once was.
William has created through his quiet time an accessible space in which his family can…. Open up to Me!
My next blog will be: Living in the Questions