Have you ever heard the saying “idleness is the devil’s playground” or perhaps something similar?
I’ve found it to be true for me personally. As the days, months and years pass by, I witness not only new challenges in my own life, but that others who I’ve always thought were “fine” were experience extreme struggles of their own: some of which had fallen, some who were getting back up. Over the last year, I’ve felt beaten, defeated and depressed for a number of reasons. So many people I know had given up and given in to things that provided temporary escape, only to find their problems waiting for them when they returned to reality.
And the one thing that seems to be consistent in my life, the one thing I can guarantee to happen: when I sit, when I do nothing, I think. And thinking, in those times, can be bad…damaging even. I criticize myself, my past actions, my naivety. For someone who enjoys the character of Sherlock Holmes, it feels more devastating when little clues that were in front of me seemed to go unnoticed and I’m eventually surprised by the suddenness of the situation.
So I’ve devoted more time to physical activities. I’m not referring to exercise. Exercise is great, but even when walking/running, I still think. However, when I work in my yard cutting grass, trimming plants, or playing with my pups, it takes my mind off of my worries if only for a few minutes to an hour. It’s enough to give me a reprieve from my own negative thoughts.
All of this reminded me of something I saw when driving to help a friend out of a bad situation. I looked to the scenery on the side of the road. There were groups of trees, each and every one of them bent in one direction. The area I was going through was usually very windy. What an inspiring image, that despite the constant onslaught of harsh winds, those trees still managed to grow and flourish. In that moment, I thought I needed to be like that, I wanted to be like that. No matter what life throws at me, I need to bend, to adjust and continue to grow.