Make Time for You: Create a Stillness Ritual

In your day-to-day life, things move at such a fast pace, you often may not make time for yourself. Juggling work and family is a challenge for many people and leaves little time for much else. Yet, it is when you allow time to be still that you can recharge your battery and have the energy you need in the other areas of your life. You can begin taking regular intervals of time for yourself by creating a Stillness Ritual.

Do not let the word ritual scare you. To set aside any concerns, let me be clear. A ritual is a series of acts you perform for a specific reason. Your Stillness Ritual is taking time to listen within. Susan L. Taylor, editorial director of Essence Magazine and author of In the Spirit says, “The wisdom and strength you seek await you in the silence within.”

I would recommend that your ritual occur at the same place and same time each day. Create a special place within your home. It does not have to be elaborate. It must only be a space used exclusively for you. Your space may be as simple as a comfortable chair or pillow. Keep it simple but make it pleasurable. Make it a place where you love to retreat. You may want to spice things up by including items in your space that reflect what you love and what you desire. You may want to include an item for each element of the universe such as:

* A candle to represent fire
* A small glass of water
* Wind chimes to symbolize the wind.
* A plant to represent the earth.

Performing your Stillness Ritual at the same time each day is very important, especially if this is a new experience for you. Select a time that will allow for minimal disruption. Early in the morning or late evenings usually works best especially if you have a family.

For the first three weeks, start with dedicating 15 minutes in the morning or late evening. Thereafter, you will find you will do it longer without much effort. The peace you will find is worth the sacrifice. Often, you will find that you actually rest more peacefully when you incorporate a consistent practice of stillness in your life.

Be sure to put the time on your calendar. Let everyone in the house know when your still time begins. Put it on the refrigerator (everyone in the family ventures there at least once a day). Set clear rules for those who may be tempted to interfere. In setting the rules there are three things to remember:

• Pre-Teach – Let potential intruders know well in advance the time and place your Stillness Ritual occurs. Explain very clearly that you do not want to be disturbed. State any exception to the do-not-disturb rule. You should not have more than one exception and that should be clear. Perhaps you may stipulate that you can be disturbed only in the case of an emergency. You must define an emergency. My mother used to lock her bedroom door and holler to her seven children that she was not to be disturbed unless someone was bleeding heavily.

• Be Firm – Speak in a strong, determined voice. People, especially children, know when you are weak.

• Be Consistent. You will be tested to see if you really mean it. You must be consistent, especially in the beginning. You are not the only one who has to get adjusted to a new way of living. Follow these simple steps to creating a Stillness Ritual in your life and you find you have:

* Increased Energy
* More Focused
* More Peaceful
* More Creativity
* Feeling of Overall Well-Being

Give yourself the gift of a Stillness Ritual. Start today.