Many discoveries come with my morning walks. The route I take most often is easy and beautiful for the first 20 minutes or so. Then comes the first big hill. When do I start thinking about that hill? Quite far in advance! Instead of enjoying each moment of this beautiful walk, I disconnect from where I am in the moment and instead, focus on the upcoming hill. When I reach the hill, I am looking to the top of it, anticipating reaching that spot. The fact is, I can climb this hill with a little more effort than the flatter parts of the walk, and even while climbing it, if I refrain from habitual judgments, it's pleasurable!
Now, at the end of the walk is the highest hill! Dwelling in advance on being a little out of breath for--yes, I timed it--3 minutes and 44 seconds--does not compare to the pleasures that this walk brings; lake views, birds, clouds and sky--and the satisfaction of climbing those hills.
What if I were to experience this walk each day as if for the first time? Habits of thought serve us well in many cases: they allow us to do routine things and to draw conclusions based on past experience, like bringing an umbrella when it's going to rain. Staying present, in the moment alleviates stress and worry, and offers us more ease in our endeavors.
Every simple act must be approached as if we have never done it before.
Then we can figure things out.
F. M. Alexander