my commitment this week is to decide about where to travel in May. Decisions decisions decisions. This is what commitment is in part about – making decisions. Which means that choices present themselves and from all alternatives, a choice has to be made. Which is turn means trying to take into account all sorts of considerations and possible future consequences. How much can I afford to spend on this trip in May? Is it ok to spend a large amount of money on myself? Well, the answer to that is not so difficult – I have the money and though I am inclined to be a bit reluctant to spend money on myself, I also know that that is self-limitimg thinking from which I need to break free. I am normally very cautious with money and I am pleased to have the particular attitude I do towards it. For me it is now or never with regard to taking an adventure with my friend Susan. She is from the States and I am here in Johannesburg South Africa. For each of us, a hunk of time away from our homes, travelling to somewhere neither has been before. Maybe we have given ourselves too many choices – Russia was a serious thought, Turkey also a serious thought, so too South America, and now Viet Nam presents itself. Does pressure help in coming to a decision? I think so. Unsure whether that is a good thing or not. Once we have decided on the destination, we will have to do much co-ordinating of flights, visas and who knows what else …
I met with Iain this evening who lives in my cottage on my property. I noted on his Facebook page several days ago that he had given up smoking. I asked him if was now a non-smoker and congratulations …
We had an interesting discussion about this .. how he achieved this. This was also of particular interest to me as I am a smoker ..
He explained his process – reading books, being in contact with websites devoted to helping smokers kick the habit, wearing patches. But there came a moment when the light bulb was switched on and all the chatter in his brain was switched off and it was an easy decision. He has been 2 months now of non-smoking. He realised that there was always a ‘longing’ for a cigarette and that that longing was in part a longing for something else and that it had been an habitual or habituated feeling for him. He changed focus and came to see that all that energy that was being expended in smoking, needed another focus. He was able to switch focus and now is able to ‘micro-manage’ his time and life better. He feels better, runs, swims, creates –
I said to him it seemed to me that he made a commitment to himself to give up the weed. And that he succeeded in keeping his commitment. He said he had been preparing all along by way of his reading about giving up, wearing nicotine patches, joining websites and re-iterated what he had already said above. And that he was encouraging others by way of a blog which he said he will send me.
I shared with him my recent experience of getting my book ‘out there’ as a free Kindle download this past week and all the angst and hiccups I had with regard to this. And my huge and very grateful surprise to see that MANY have downloaded my book. I managed somehow to get onto my own personal amazon account* last night *and only by fluke, and I could hardly believe that in excess of 500 people had downloaded my book. This was the hugest surprise. I had been so busy this past week with getting the info out, people coming to stay and a 100 other things were keeping me occupied with no time to think ”was anyone downloading my book?” I think in a sense I had no attachment to outcome, if only because there was no time to think about it. But I do think that I had made a commitment to myself to get my book out there – that this was an opportunity in spite of my aversion to being so public.
So, I have learned in a meaningful and personal way what commitment means and am gratified by this.
Of course, this does not mean to say that my free download will be read!! But I achieved something and for that I am grateful. I am glad of my commitment.
To commit, to make a commitment: a heavily laden concept.
I’ve just had an sms from my sweet sister in Cape Town who said in a word, that she is weeding. I responded to say ‘weed out all those negative thoughts and let the ego take a back seat. Work well … xx’.
I also took a stroll outside to my garden now in the lovely mid-morning sunshine, walked down to the end of it and looked at my secret garden that I fashioned some years ago. Over the years it has been added to, looked at and admired by me. It has a small Ghanian chair on which to sit. The basics of it are still the same with its mandala of bricks and plants planted just so … it is still overhung with beautiful branches and really, it is a delight. One day will commit to sitting on that chair – maybe just sitting, maybe just thinking, or meditating …
It brought me back to my essay “Gardening” wherein I write about this process of creating a secret garden, that no-one could see from any vantage point of my home, even if one goes right down to the perimeter of the garden. You have to know what you are looking for to know that it is there.
I remember writing what hard work this was over many many months, though there were times in-between when the project lay fallow, in part due to seasonal changes .. But what was so interesting and revelatory to me, was that when one commits, the universe seems to support that commitment and the process unfolds.
Somehow, it seems pertinent that this, my first blog, is about both commitment and gardening …
I hope we can get something really interesting and fascinating on the go by way of blogging – about commitment.