Heard the expression, "A watched pot never boils?"
you ever hovered over a pot on the stove and waited for the water to
boil? It takes time, and somehow the time seems to stretch out even
farther when you're waiting for the change to happen.
see anything at first, and then you slowly feel the pot physically
warming up. After a little while, tiny bubbles start to form at the
pot's base. Eventually, these tiny bubbles start chasing each other up
to the water's surface. The bubbles start to dance faster and faster,
until you see larger bubbles forming. Finally after about five to ten
minutes, the water shows a rolling boil. Phew!
can be fun to watch once in a blue moon, if you have the patience for
it. But what if you were to cover the pot, turn your back on it and do
something else for five to ten minutes, and then return to it once it's
boiling--without ever having watched all the steps in between?
with the changes we want to see with our health or with life in
general, it can be tempting to hover over ourselves and wait expectantly
for the changes to occur. Ironically, a lot of times when we're being
our most attentive and we feel like change should come because of our
intense focus on it, it evades us. Why?
witnessed (or been) a teenager who gets a zit during the most
inopportune time, like before a date or before the prom? The teenager
stares at the menace in the mirror, telling it to be gone or else...and
the darn thing gets bigger overnight! What happened? Why didn't it
listen to the poor teen who needed to be seen blemish-free for an
important moment in time?
Focus can be a good thing. If you focus
on studies, you can do better on a test. If you focus on the road, you
can be a safer driver. If you focus on what you want, you can take steps
to get there. But in certain areas, there is such a thing as too much
focus to the point where pressure starts to build and you prevent
changes from happening naturally.
Too much focus
can turn into a mixture of control and stress. You can start trying to
control everything so that things can go your way, but naturally in this
world not everything can be controlled. Also, you'll face the loss of
not approaching situations as who you are because you're too fixated on
the outcome of the change you'd like to see happen. Whether you want
more financial freedom, a new job, a slimmer waist, more energy in life,
less insomnia, a better diet, more mature communication with those you
know, or whatever else....
...it might be worth it to give the changes enough space to breathe
too. Change is rebellious, just like teenagers are or life is in
general. If you try to control it too much, it can do the opposite of
what you want it to do. You want faster, it'll go slower. You want
cleaner, it'll go messier. You want smoother, it'll go rougher. Once in a
while, if you take even a small step back and let the change happen
more naturally, you may see more progress made with less effort from you
and your focused mind!
Now, isn't that ironic?