Saturday, July 12, 2014

Your Attention Please

What has your attention? What do you focus on? Attention is a powerful thing.

Do you pay attention to the world around you, technology, your favorite book (often my favorite choice), your favorite TV show?

In a recent conference for my church a leader said something I found profound about attention. "When you are with your friends, give them the gift of your attention. Your brain cannot concentrate on two things at once. Multitasking amounts to quickly shifting your focus from one thing to another. An old proverb days, "If you chase two rabbits, you won't catch either one."" (The Choice Generationation, Randell L. Ridd)

What do we miss? What do we gain from what attention we give? 

I do want to make a disclaimer, I am not advocating the elimination of Technology in our lives. In many ways I feel like it makes us more productive and gives us the opportunity to give more attention to others both virtually and physically. I think it can enrich relationships when it's used right. Both of the above video's (available on youtube) have made me think about my use of technology in my life and less specifically about what I focus on in my life.

The human brain can only focus on one thing at a time, we have the ability to choose what has our attention, my invitation to myself and the world is to look at what has your attention and what the end result of that attention will be. Be it a boyfriend, work, a video game, facebook, religion, a good book, a blog, or a hobby. Be actively participating in the choice of where your attention is focused, if you let it happen other sources will decide it for you.

Food for thought.

~Katie Jean~

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Needing and Being Needed By Others

So I've been thinking about an idea for a few days. In a book I'm reading it has been talking about how what people want out of life is to be needed. To be wanted by those around them. This is also stated on Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs as well. It's the third tier, the need for "Love and Belonging."

So what I've been really pondering is greif. When someone dies you feel a great loss. It is deep and it is very real. And the more you need someone the greater the loss you feel. I also personally feel a bit of selfishness is involved, at least for me. I feel like the loss is greater when I consider how much they needed or would have needed me. I feel the loss most acutely at times when I feel I would need or would have been needed by the person I've lost. It's the absence of that feeling that I am morning.

I was once asked by a good friend if the pain of losing someone fades, if it stops hurting. I have thought a lot about this question. I think I can say from my own experience that it never fades completely, though perhaps it changes as my perspective changes. I still cry in grief at my loss to this day though it was over 15 years ago, though I cry more rarely. But I think what still hurts is the longing and the loss. You never regain or replace what you lost, not in this lifetime. Your needs that that person met, the way they met them, cannot be replaced. Your feelings of being wanted and needed by someone else cannot be met by someone else the way they were by the one you lost. However those unmet needs can be met by someone else. It just won't be in the same way.

So I think the answer is no, not in this life, it never fully fades, or stops "hurting" because the hole never is filled. It can't be until you are reunited in the next life with the one lost and once again your need for them and their need for you is met.

My life continues after I lose someone because others need me, and I need them. Life continues, though the grief or loss is never truly over. And truly, I wouldn't ever want it to end. I want to continue to need those I've lost till we meet again and I want (or perhaps it's that I need) them to need me in return.

~Katie Jean~