Kris O'Connell
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Many Days, One Piece

Jan 18, 2023

We're constantly monitoring our time but yet we can never manage it properly. Travel time. Our morning routines. A particular meeting. Everything we want to pack into a day. How much energy do we lose just trying to manage something…something that is arguably a manmade construct? We use a vibrating stone to track the pulse of a second in order to add up enough of them for minutes, which put 60 of them together and we get an hour. Guess how many we have of those per day? You guessed it - not enough. We try to get to bed at a reasonable time and then when we do we toss and turn. Now those 8 hours of sleep you needed rolls into the time you planned out for the next day. You've overslept and now in panic mode trying to accomplish everything you need in time to be on time. While we try to devote our entire headspace and attention to a particular problem, issue, puzzle…we're distracted because we need to be or do something else in a certain amount of time. So if we're always partially distracted by the clock that monitors the time for us, do we need to devote more time to the tasks we're working to execute? Do we just need to eliminate hourly starts and stops as a whole? We can't really do that because then when something starts at 6 and you're there at 6 while no one else is…can you even start the event?

Time is a headfuck, man. At what point did we lose track of priorities? Extreme punctuality has stolen our lifeforce. We strive to give ourselves as a whole to the people around us, but the ticking and the tocking of the device on the wall reminds us that our attention is finite. We can only give our awareness to someone or something for so long before it takes from someone or something else. When we lay in bed, the ticking on the wall can be like the thumping heart under the floorboards. It reminds us that we are subject to the moment when our other clock decides to wake us with a war-cry of the economic world. We're disrupted from the intangible world that, while we can't seem to grasp it, can feel far more real than the waking world. And yet, we allow ourselves to be slaves to that secondary screaming clock so that we can be a cog in the economic gears. We certainly don't wake with the sun like our ancestors or the other creatures around us. We don't wake to the birds that will chirp increasingly louder as the sun rises higher. Most of us don't wake to our circadian rhythm either, which is that inherent waking mechanism we were all born with. It's our internal alarm clock, but we don't listen because the piercing noises coming from our quartz-holders haven't rattled our brains yet. We can still fight to get back into that celestial realm that we can't quantify with any scientific method but not without the nagging thought of the moving world around us.

But time is fleeting, regardless of how it plays out. We only have so many moments left on this planet or within this realm. One of these days, we won't have the luxury of being woken up by an iPhone's default alarm clock. One day we won't wake at all. Yet, many of us spend our days in a position where our finite hours are spent doing someone else's bidding…just for mere shekels so that our lights can stay on. Then there's always the lovely 10% of people who feel the need to climb a moral highground and verbally berate the worker bees from their high horse. Oddly enough, they fail to recognize that their foundation was built on the blood of others while touting to the peasants how clean their hands are. This world is full of men who boast of their ethics while doing the work of the holy... while simultaneously killing in the lord's name. It's 2023…is this cycle never ending? Do we just use different deities at this point? The players and strategy have remained the same but the game in which they play seems significantly different. Is mankind just always meant to have an unbreakable hierarchy of power? Has the same bloodline always been at the top but now they hide? Is there any truth to the lizard-people running our world hand in hand with the illuminati?

While these thoughts of time, control, and existence run wild through our mind, the anxious heart screams to be heard. To be heard is to be loved, right? Well, if you're heart is thumping so hard it resembles the kick of a door, then you're clearly not listening hard enough. While you meditate and you quiet the world around you, all the clocks, people, and tasks... you gain the ability take in the thoughts in your own body and mind, you're tuning into your own frequency. The longer we stay in that deep trance, the longer we can hear what's really going on. The weight of thoughts will cause the emotion to stick with you, sometimes more than it actually should. You feel guilt from eating someone's food, you feel dread towards a task that needs completing, you feel some sadness of a traumatic event. If we can take a moment just to acknowledge these thoughts, the emotions start to work their way through. It's like you're turning the valve on a water pipe, now it can flow again. When we crimp the hose, these thoughts can stay with us too long. Or if there's too much static all the time, it's like having a conversation at a night club. 10 minutes is a good start, but 20 is like taking a mental shower. Longer than that and it's therapeutic, like going to a spa for your mind. But who has 8 hours to literally lay around and do nothing? Monks and animals, that's who.

How do we know that the thoughts that we're acknowledging are the one's that are serving us? That's for us to think about after we're done meditating. When we sit up, when we recall the thoughts that came through…that's when we can do a debrief with ourselves. Doing it in the moment takes you away from the frequency. It's like working on a painting - if you're just being a critic of your work the entire time, you're not flowing with where the art is taking you. The valve is closed. Albeit a different valve, but it'll be a closed valve nonetheless. The practice of sitting still and just hearing your own thoughts isn't a difficult one, but what's difficult is that if you don't do it at the start of your day, it can be immensely more difficult to do. Moreso it's easier to avoid. We're caught up in our bullshit, the day has taken a stranglehold upon us, we don't have 10 or 20 minutes to lay down and do nothing. This is only a lie that we tell ourselves, it's merely not prioritizing your own mental cleanliness over the cleanliness of the dishes. They'll get done, but take care of yourself first.

Just like focusing and prioritizing your mental clarity practices, whatever we give attention to will grow. When we feed a sweettooth, we give power to a craving. When that craving returns next time, it'll be more prevalent and louder than before. We'll be more subservient to it than before we gave into it. But if we give attention to a positive habit, the power of the habit will grow. When we give into a child's tantrum, the child knows it gets attention this way, therefore it'll continue to act out to get attention. The child is truly unaware that it craves attention but subconsciously will act out if that is the only way for him or her to be heard. If the child is spoon-fed attention for his or her positive behavior, you'll cultivate more positive behavior. Back on the other side of the spectrum, the same can be said about complaining people; if they are only able to create conversation by bitching and moaning, then they'll continue to feed that beast. They'll be the utmost Debbie Downer that they can be, meanwhile anyone worth having a conversation with cannot stand to be around them. The wiser a person is, the more likely they are to avoid these energy vampires. Yet, here's a dilemma - a really thoughtful person wants to help those that are in need, but there is a difference between a person in need and a needy person. The person in need could use a hand, maybe even just a hug in their moment of weakness. The needy person constantly needs help, constantly needs to gripe, and constantly wants a handout. The kind person wants to help, but if they always help everyone, they'll have nothing left for the people who could actually use it. How does the thoughtful one distinguish between the needy two?

At first take, you have to treat both equally. Everyone deserves a fair shake. What you'll find is that the person that just needed a little outside help will thank you up and down for being there in their time of need. The needy person, on the other hand, will be like the dog that just ate a treat and stares at you for another one, forgetting about the first one you gave them. The tail will wag, but they'll keep coming to you for more treats. It's like feeding a seagull at the beach - you done fucked up. Now the whole shitty tribe of birds is going to be the flying ants at your picnic. Sometimes people are going to be grateful for your good deeds while others will expect that you continually give them more. You cannot continue to give yourself to these people, for they will tear you down and pull you into their black hole of consumption. They consume your help, consume your energy, consume all that is around them in the expectation that they should have more, while never feeling full for what they've taken in. They never create. It's like the toilet constantly flushing, but to create is to fill the bowl back up. Perhaps not the greatest analogy, but the same spiral can go internal in consumption but can also move externally in creation. There's no true measurement of this fourth dimension, but it is surely there. We've all been around those that energize you and those that drain you. Surround yourself with those that energize you to do more and avoid those that take without reciprocation.

Use your time wisely, but enjoy your time. Remember it is YOUR time. When we no longer have time, nothing will have mattered. We are merely a speck of dust in an infinitely expanding universe. Quell the anxiety, give the respect to your thoughts, give respect to your energy. Surround yourself with positivity and do everything in your power to cultivate more of it. But hey - remember to enjoy yourself from time to time, because it'll all be gone one day and you'll go back to the place for whence you came.

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