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The perils of watching the clock

July 23, 2012

While exchanging emails with fellow gym instructor, Curtis, I was lamenting how quickly the summer was passing me by. His response was:

“I try not to mourn the passing of summer until September…”

It both shamed and inspired me.

You see, I constantly fail at enjoying the present because I am already dreading the end. For example, when I visit my family, I feel sad about the inevitable goodbye. And I have actually thought to myself that if I don’t see them at all I won’t have to say goodbye! Problem solved! (Stupid, huh?)

I am most guilty during the warm months. It is my favorite time of the year. I am fearless when the sun is darkening my skin and I have a tasty Margarita in hand. I eagerly anticipate this awakening… I talk magnanimously about all the wonderful things I am going to do with my friends… Then the days and months pass by in a blur. Before I know it, it is time to don a jacket again and face shorter days with less sunlight. I am left unfulfilled, incomplete and a little depressed… Great. Just great. Year after year the best season seems to catch me unprepared.

After all, time flies when you are having fun, yes? But the real injury is that I am missing out on fully enjoying the present. On love. On life. On unadulterated joy. I am not allowing myself to completely experience moments so that I can learn from them and be refreshed!  Life is passing me by!

I know I can’t enjoy the present when I am living too far into the future. And I have to stop myself every time from looking at my watch and thinking “oh it will be time to go again soon.” (Unless I’m in a meeting then staring at the clock is a MUST).

A picture of my watch

I need to change this behavior. And Curtis’s statement reminded me that I need to work harder to do so. I can’t keep worrying about things that haven’t happened yet. {Insert cliché on worrying HERE}

I don’t yet have a solid solution to my self-jeopardizing tendency but awareness of the behavior and knowing my penchant for doom and gloom will hopefully keep me in check. I am patiently training myself knowing that it will be a dance of two steps forward, one step back.

Have you kicked this habit? Do you have any advice to share? Or are you (like me) still in the throes of fighting it? I would love to hear about it.

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From → Mind

5 Comments
  1. Conchita Dublin permalink

    Try singing, especially upbeat songs. Your yogi friend Annie Carlin recommends it and was happily surprised that’s what she does (in addition to yoga of course) because that is what I used to do when I was going through my anxiety. It really works.

    • I like singing and I like dancing around to upbeat songs! Clearly I need to do it more often! Now if only Warren will let me… 😉

  2. See…and my face season is Fall. 🙂

  3. Brittani permalink

    I practice Bikram yoga, and in class the instructors often say to embrace the sensations that you’re feeling right now – good or bad (and trust me, there are some not-so-fun sensations in there too). Be aware of your body and your breath and that will help stay in the moment and out of the future – which is all in your head anyways since it hasn’t happened yet. Still have lots to work on, but this post was a great reminder. Thanks!

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