YOU ARE HERE
A few years ago, one very dark and extremely cold winter’s evening, I was cycling though the centre of my local park when I passed an elderly gentleman. He had stopped his mobility scooter under a street light, (surrounded by the dark expanse of the park), and I saw that with an anxious brow, he was studying a large map unfolded across his handlebars.
Being uneasy about whether he might be lost – I returned to where he was, and asked “Excuse me, do you know where you’re going?” The gentleman looked up cautiously, smiled broadly, lifted his cloth cap, before breaking out in laughter, replying “I know where I'm going young man. I just don’t know where I am!”
This in turn made me laugh – not least because he had addressed, in my 50's, as a ‘young man’ - resulting in a magic moment of two strangers giggling together.
Thinking back , I like to think that perhaps what really tickled our humour was the recognition of a universal truth, and that life is so often like this, in that we know where we want to be, but we don't know where we are, or where our starting point is.
We usually know where we're headed, but all too often often we don’t know where we are.
And this not being aware of where we are – in the present moment - can be very confusing, even causing at times - anxiety and stress.
Getting back to my story about the elderly gentleman; it being my local area, I was able to point out on the map, where he was currently starting from – at which he immediately steered his scooter 180° around and set off in the direction he’d come from, waving a jaunty thank you as he went!
The good news in life is that it's actually only our thinking that takes us out of now; and that returning to a quiet or lighter mind, always brings us back to our bearings - from which we can then proceed.
Only in the present moment, can we make adjustments. And in fact even that’s not necessary. Simply giving space for our bearings to settle – naturally, and without effort, is all that's required for us to start from here.