We are in the midst of the quietest part of the year at All Saints’ Episcopal Day School. Earlier this week, recognizing that things would soon change on that score, a colleague and I lamented that one cannot bank calm. Further reflection has advanced my feelings beyond lament.
First of all, I have become more grateful for the gift of calm in the here and now. I am able to do things that I simply am not able (or at least tell myself I am not able) to do when the school is in full operation and high gear. Further those things fall on two ends of the spectrum- from the sublime to the mundane. On that less glamorous end of the spectrum I have time to clear the clutter, review files and gleefully excise some of them electronically or via shredder, and experience a sense of mild accomplishment even though the task is tedious. On the richer end of the spectrum I have had time to read the books and articles that have been on my list and on my shelf for weeks or months. Additionally, I have the time to read these materials at a pace that does them justice and allows them to marinate in my consciousness. The final pleasure is the creative daydreaming that emanates from the marinating.
And although it may be true that we cannot bank calm, it is also imperative that we build calm into our lives even when our lives are the busiest. The counterintuitive result is that we shall be more productive, and more importantly we shall be more balanced, peaceful, and accessible to the people in our lives. Author Daniel H. Pink would suggest that this process helps a person to move from a Type A to a Type B individual, which in my case has been a lifelong and still continuing task. If calm is a descriptor of our external environment, serenity is the internal resource that provides what we need in times hectic or relaxed. And serenity is indeed something that we can take to our spiritual bank.
Until next time…