Sunday, March 4, 2012

Off the Leash - The benefits when I unchain my brain

Recently I have had several bouts of Overwhelmed-Itis.  This is when I have too much to do and stay too busy for too long that I either become paralyzed and cannot manage even the simple tasks or I collapse from exhaustion.  And when I refuse to collapse, then my back goes out or something equally disabling. 

Between my very busy 40 hour/week job at a local hospital and the documentary I am working on in my "spare" time, my brain is chained to a "to-do list" all the time.  If I'm not at work thinking about what needs to be done there, I am elsewhere thinking about what needs to be done for the documentary.  Add to that my family and friends and my desire to stay connected with them... play dates become an item on the "to-do list" as well!  Not to mention trying to keep my house clean!

Last week my house was an embarrassing mess.  I was seriously considering buying a hazmat suit to tackle the kitchen.  It was disgusting.  Plus I had a meeting scheduled last Sunday with one of the board members for  the documentary- and it was supposed to be here at my house! Usually inviting somebody over is good motivation to clean.  And that had been the plan for last Saturday.  Spin class then clean the rest of the day in preparation for the meeting.  

Luckily I followed my instincts on that important plan of attack.  And my instincts said "Let your brain off the leash.  Unchain it from the to-do list.  Let it wander freely wherever it wants to go for the whole day!" This, of course, meant avoiding the kitchen...I considered putting yellow "warning" tape across the door to my kitchen so I wouldn't have to encounter the nastiness growing in and around my sink.  And I moved the board member meeting to a local coffee shop. 

Aside from running the risk of having my house condemned by the health department, I am SO GLAD I let my brain off the leash last weekend.  I had been feeling overwhelmed and uninspired about the documentary for a few weeks.  By letting my brain off the leash to wander, it instinctively found inspiration in piles of seemingly wasted time watching several TED Talks in a row.  I allowed myself the luxury of a TED-a-thon and, as usual, they gave me inspiration.  For the documentary and the TED Talk I might be giving on April 7th.  

In summary, keeping my brain chained to a list of tasks leaves no room for God to fill my brain with His inspiration, truth, and GRACE.