Tomorrow is my grandmother's 95th birthday party. She is a mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and great-great grandmother. And, she is one of the most peaceful women I know. If you ask her what her secret is in remaining so healthy, so alert, so vibrant, so calm, she will tell you:
If someone or something is bothering you, tell them, "I don't need you to complicate my life."
So simple. She has always refused to let anyone or anything cause her a moment of anxiety or anguish. Rise about it she'd always say. Easier said than done, but she's 95 years old so the advice bears some attention.
I used to pride myself on all that I could accomplish during one "free" minute. I remember telling my grandmother what a good multi-tasker I'd become since becoming a mother. Her response was, wisely, Don't crowd yourself.
She was right. I really think it's a good (and healthy) idea to at least try to focus on what I'm doing at any given moment and be mindful of the experience. I'm reading an insightful book called Mindfulness, by Ellen Langer in which she advocates for more control over our lives - not by trying to do more - but by changing our perspective on things and focusing on what we are doing and the choices we make. Simply and peacefully; not complicated and stressful.