Under Construction: PHASE ONE what the digging taught me

As we prepared for renewal by assessing our structure and removing what no longer serves it’s purpose, my dad gave me the task of digging.  Earth under my fingers, it’s fresh smell in my nostrils, Lord knows I love to dig and as always the digging unearthed freshness of perspective and brought it to my attention.  These particular jewels seem to lend themselves nicely to living well so I share them with you!

Purpose matters
Digging always puts me in touch with my primal, childlike nature. My hands pull across a mound of dirt and I am filled with joyous memories of being a young girl convincing my sister to keep digging as deeply as possible to see if we really could make a tunnel to china like in the cartoon or find something someone buried.  Digging this time, I noticed the urge to just keep digging and had to remind myself WHY I was digging in the first place.  I was digging to see what the beams of our porch were supported by.  This would determine if we simply needed to leave them be, reinforce them, or completely rebuild them.  Dig too deeply or too wildly, and I quickly use up my much needed energy, compromising the project. Dig too little and we don’t get enough information to guide future efforts.   Similarly in life, as we strive to improve ourselves and the situations we find ourselves in, we may be drawn at first wonder to wildly explore.  Our digging then feels fevered, haunted, urgent, and the information we find often overwhelms, shading all reflections, memories and sensations.  This makes us less likely to continue the process, compromising our growth and change, or whatever we hoped for at the start.  It is important to dig and uncover information mindfully; aware of/ guided by purpose, and with care.

Tools matters  “Right tools for the right job,” my dad said in passing for the millionth time as I was clearly struggling to denail a couple pieces of wood. I had been using a hammer, which in my worldview should have worked~ I was trying so hard to make it work. However these nails were deep in and I didn’t have proper leverage with that tool, I needed to use the long handled prybar.  My dad is a highly skilled master carpenter.  I am not.  Clearly there are things that he can do that I just can’t wrap my head around, and yet given the right tool there are certain things I can do just right.  So it is in life, so remember if something is feeling like its just too hard, too much of a struggle, or like it’s going to take forever to accomplish or make right, ask yourself: Am I using the right tool to do this job efficiently?  (or effectively, or whatever measure of satisfaction you are aiming for)  If the answer is yes, you may have to go back and question the worth of the task’s purpose (see above), or change the way you are using the tool (see below.)

Angles matters There were times when I was digging that the earth presented itself as hardened and seemingly impenetrable.  I remember thinking, I guess this is a good spot to stop at since I can’t get around this blockage.  Upon standing though it was clear that I did needed to dig deeper for reasons listed above.  A small change of perspective allowed for wonder and creativity.  A shift in how the tool was held allowed for a different angle.  A different angle allowed for new space to be unearthed, cracks to open, and a large rock’s reveal.  See, we can have the purpose and the right tools and still work from an angle that impedes our process~ thankfully not for too long if we pause for perspective every once in a while.


I am sure this sparks and inspires thoughts in you, I would love to read them! Share below or email me.

This entry was published on June 11, 2014 at 10:07 pm. It’s filed under insights, Inspirations and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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