If you’re like me, you often think, “oh, if only there were more hours in a day, or another day in the week, then I could get it all done.”
Even if there were, I probably wouldn’t get it all done.
We don’t really need more time, we need to make better use of the time we have.
The trick is not to get more done. The trick is to decide what you really need/want to be doing and eliminate the rest.
Successful people know how to focus their time and energy. Being productive relies on the ability to distinguish between tasks that move you closer to your goals and tasks that don’t.
Every time you’re about to take on another task, ask yourself: is this the best use of my time? How will this move me towards my goals?
The $25,000 productivity tip
In researching productivity for this post, I came across an amazing true story on how to be more productive.
Most of us have heard the Native American term “it is a good day to die.” It was usually said in the movies by a Native warrior as he rode off into battle.
But how often do we think about what that really means? Do we live as though each day is a good day to die? Are we ready?
Most indigenous cultures understand that death is a natural part of the life cycle, and don’t fear it.
Modern American and European cultures do not have that understanding. While everyone knows they’re going to die, no one actually believes it.
And it’s a shame really, because being ready to die at any given moment means your life is spiritually rich and vibrant. It means you’re living with purpose and contribution.
Bear Heart drumming at a wedding
I have been facilitating a Full Moon Drumming Circle for the past six years and I always get the same comment/question when new people inquire about joining us:
“I’ve never drummed before and I don’t know how to do it.”
The fact is: everyone knows how to drum. It’s in our DNA and is one of the oldest means of communication, meditation and musical expression.
So I just tell them to have courage, keep a steady beat and follow the leader. Nothing could be simpler.
Health benefits of drumming
Here are some documented medical benefits of drumming:
- Reduction in the hormonal stress response.
- Participants in weekly music therapy with drumming were less anxious, less distressed and had higher self esteem.
- Increase in natural killer cell activity and enhanced immune system.
I can grow anywhere!
When I purchased my first house over 15 years ago, I was pretty darn excited. About everything, even weeding.
I do know that, in the bigger picture of things, weeds are simply plants that we don’t know the use for. . . yet.
But sometimes they grow where we don’t want them. And what’s to be done, but … weeding!
Being in Southern California, I studied drought resistant plants and took pride in doing all my own landscaping.
I remember a friend being over one day and as we sat on the patio I saw a few weeds in the flower bed and reached down to pull them out. She made some comment about weeding and I said, “Yes, I’ll be weeding the rest of my life.”
We laughed at the time, but it was an off hand comment that was truly prophetic.
So what does it mean to be weeding for the rest of our lives? I’m not going to go into the esoteric teachings of removing negative thoughts and habits from our lives, though that is a good analogy.
I’m really going to talk about weeding an outdoor garden and how to make the best of it.
The next time you see a group of trees, don’t just admire their beauty. Say thank you for all they do for us.
Did you know trees communicate with one another? They have a consciousness far beyond our awareness.
They also fight crime. Read on.
Native American teachings on trees
“It’s amazing what you feel from a tree. It can give us energy. When we take long hikes in wooded areas, we often put our fingertips on the ends of the cedar or the pine needles. Just standing there touching them, you’re going to feel energy come to you.
“Trees are emitting energy all the time. Every needle of the tree, every leaf, is trying to make the atmosphere breathable for us. That’s why my people have great respect for trees. The trees are our relatives — we call them “tall standing brothers.” Bear Heart in The Wind Is My Mother
- Being in the presence of an old tree will bring much calm, deep thoughts and wisdom. Some are thousands of years old and are the elders of the earth. They’ve seen a lot in that time and hold much wisdom.
- Trees provide us with fuel to warm our homes and cook our food, and we can build our homes from them.
- They spend their lives basking in the sun, and when they die and we use them as firewood, they represent the sun here on earth.
- Members of Bear Heart’s tribe would hang a bucket of water in a tree for a day to purify it, draping cheesecloth over it to keep debris from falling in.