ShamanTalk Episode 78
Finding the Time for Spirituality
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What is Time?
What is our relationship to Time?
Why do we often feel that we lack time?
This may seem like an odd question, but have you ever considered your relationship with time?
Most of us feel incredibly frustrated when it comes to time. I continuously hear my clients tell me, “I don’t have enough time” or “wouldn’t that be great if I had space to do…(such & such)”.
Not to mention our societies’ gripping fear of ageing, regret, and wasting time– that is a lot of pressure we put on ourselves regarding time.
The truth is, most of us have a pretty adversarial relationship to time.
There’s never enough. We’re always behind. It goes by too fast. We can’t do important things because we don’t have enough time.
This week I talk about how daily (or even weekly) spiritual practice can redefine our relationship with time, so we end up feeling we have MORE time rather than less time.
What does a poor relationship with time look like?
- Thinking you need much longer than you do to complete tasks
- Always thinking of the future and worrying about what you don’t have time to do
- Losing time and not quite knowing what happened to your day
- Wasting time on numbing behaviours then always saying that you’re too busy
- Using being busy as a badge of honour and feeling righteous that you’re always busy
- Living in the past and focusing on old hurts and stories that stop you from living in the now
- Choosing not to prioritise self-care on the basis that you don’t have time
- Choosing not to engage in a daily or even weekly spiritual practise even though you really want to on the basis that you don’t have time.
- Always making time to meet others’ demand while ignoring your own needs and wants
- Worrying that you’ve wasted so much time in your life and there’s not enough time left to accomplish your goals
Here are four ideas that can help you to improve your relationship with time:
1) Saying ‘No’ to Something is Saying ‘Yes’ to Something Else
This is perhaps the most fundamental idea on the list, and I cover this in other podcasts and workshops. It’s another look at boundaries – but from the perspective of time.
Every time you say ‘No’ to something, you say ‘Ýes’ to something else. You may not know what you are saying ‘Yes’ to instead, but you create the possibility for something else to happen. Saying ‘No’ creates possibilities!
2) Stop Complaining About Time
In his book The Big Leap, Gay Hendricks has a section entitled Einstein Time. The premise is that we think time is linear, but that is emphatically not our experience of it. For instance, we will wait while an hour creeps by painfully while stuck in A&E or waiting for a late appointment and be so surprised how a weekend with our family flies by instantly. There are many useful ideas in Hendricks’ writing about time, but the one that has made the biggest difference is experimenting with this: just stop complaining about time. Put yourself on a time silence for two weeks, as a starting point, where you stop complaining about being late or being early, or anything else to do with time. At all.
Not only does complaining about time bring time (or our lack of it) into incredible focus, but it constantly undermines our integrity. We regularly blame time for our lack of boundaries, why we prioritised another task, or why we are putting ourselves first for a change.
The truth is, mostly, it wasn’t ‘time’s fault’ or anything or anyone’s fault; it was our choice.
No more ‘I’m in a rush, no more ‘I haven’t got time’, no more any of that.
Just “I prioritised something else”.
See what changes.
3) The Urgent and Important Matrix
Time for another practical exercise to guide you. A friend of mine taught me this matrix, and it was so useful for me! The concept is the difference between Urgent and Important via a 2 x 2 matrix.
The aim here is never to do things in the bottom left:
‘Not Urgent and Unimportant’ – why would you be doing these things?
And as far as possible, never let things get into the top right; ‘Urgent and Important’ – this is when things can get stressful, and mistakes can happen.
Then, as you sit looking at the matrix, you start asking yourself, ‘Well, what should I be spending my time on?’ the answer should become clear:
If there is nothing in the top right quadrant, you should do what’s in the top left quadrant; ‘Important and Not Urgent.
Because if you do these important things while they aren’t urgent, they will never get into the top right quadrant.
4) RECONNECTING WITH NATURAL CYCLES
I saw a statement in an article today that said ‘Nature is good for us’. Like we’re separate from it like it’s something we give a passing thought to, and I laughed out loud!
Simply put, nature is good for us because we are part of nature. We are human animals evolved as an integral part of the natural world, and this embeddedness in the natural world can often be forgotten and overlooked.
Mentally, we can become disconnected from nature because we’re now deeply embedded in a human-made world.
Being a part of the Earth and its season and cycles in a meaningful way will redefine our relationship with time. Nature just is – the tree never says I don’t have time to bloom today. The tide always moves with the moon. Spend time in this space and ask to connect to your natural rhythm and cycles.
Activities & Journeys
Journey with your Guides to Time. Ask to be shown what your relationship looks like energetically and how it affects you. Then ask to be shown a healthy, energetic relationship with time.
You can Journey to Time more often, ask other questions, and ask for any healing you may need to help support your changing relationship with time.
2. Working with the Moon is a great way to reconnect with Natures cycles.
Start on a New Moon (although any time is fine) and spend a few minutes each day connecting with Moon energy.
Simply using your powerful imagination and thinking about the Moon is enough. You can also be out looking at the Moon if she’s visible or download a picture you can look at to help you connect.
Write notes about how you feel at each point in the moon cycle. At the end of the month, read through your notes and see if you feel differently about time.
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