making time to reflect

Teaching at a university means that April and May are a bit crazy for me.  As the end of the semester nears the grading begins to pile up and the meetings with students increase, all the while the regular day-to-day planning and teaching continue.  At times, the number of tasks on the to-do list seems to out number the hours and minutes in the day.  It's in those moments that I find myself starting to cut out other things in life, or at least putting them on the back burner until the semester ends.  Sometimes the things that slide are household tasks (who am I kidding...those are always the first to go!), then there's time with friends, and occasionally time with family.  This spring, however, I've found myself letting my morning reflection time go.  There just hasn't been time for least that's what I've told myself and believed.  I've found myself repeatedly choosing the snooze button and restless sleep over a few minutes alone with my coffee and journal in my favorite chair.  I've told myself that I'll take time for that on Saturday, but then Saturday gets booked with projects or events that start as soon as the breakfast dishes have been cleared and when the weekend ends and the next busy week begins, I'm back to rushing out the door with breakfast in tow and coffee to go.  

But whenever I get into this rhythm of busyness and let my reflection time slip, after a few days/weeks I begin to feel out of balance.  I get irritable and easily frustrated.  I feel overwhelmed and feel like I lack clear direction/purpose for the day.  I just don't feel like me.  


You see...I've been journalling almost daily for the past 15 years as every time I've gotten out of my rhythm I've begun to feel this same way.  And while sometimes it takes me a few days/weeks to realize why I feel out of sorts, the realization always comes.  And when that realization comes a new, it always reminds me of the importance of recharging.  As an introvert, it is so very needed in my life.  My morning reflection time, is that time for me.  And when I'm consistent with it, it energizes me to get through my days of to-do lists and extroverted interactions.  

This week has been one of those realization weeks for me.  It's been a week of realizing that as full as my days and nights may be, they will be better if I take a few minutes to pause and reflect on where I'm at.  To pause and reflect on the day before and prepare for the day ahead.  It's not a moment to plan out the day, but rather to remind myself of what the day should really be about.  It's a reminder of the greater purpose of this life here on earth.