Looking up is my new thing. No hidden meaning there, nothing mysterious, just actually looking up. Raising your head and your eyes and looking towards the sky. A certain recombobulator told me about this and I’ve started doing it over the past few days.
So here’s the thing. Remember when you were a kid and a lot of your day was spent looking up. On a swing, in a field, up a tree, your eyes always wandered skyward, losing themselves in the clouds and the endless possibilities they held. And then we grew up and our eyes became fixed forward or downwards. We don’t really look up anymore. Our focus is on what’s in front of us, behind us, below us and we miss out on the simple joy of what is above.
When I started doing this little practice I found it a bit dizzying. My balance is so tied to the ground that it was strange and unsettling. But last night in the gym I got it. I got why it makes a difference to adjust your line of sight. As usual I was on the treadmill, watching the distance tick slowly by, willing myself to break through the mundane hamster on a wheel syndrome and clock the distance that I wanted to reach. Then I decided to look up. I fixed my eyes on the fabulous ceiling tiles over my head (oh but they are a sight to behold!) and kept it there. Bit strange at first and I’m sure the other mice in the gym lab thought I had finally flipped my lid, but it was worth it. When I was looking up my brain changed gears. The negative voices that had been focused on the running, and how fecking hard and boring it was, were quieted. I became lost in thoughts of the book I’m writing and worked out a few ideas that I’ve been struggling with. I started to see again the possibilities that were out there for me, and how I could and would achieve them. Maybe it was the blood rushing to my head (and maybe it was my unstable insane side) but my perspective changed to the positive. I’m telling you it’s almost impossible not to think positively when your looking up.
And that is what separates us from the little people. They’ve got it. They know what they’re at. They know that all the good stuff happens up there and not down here. Ever watched a small child running blindly with their head up? I have a small person that is forever crashing into things because her focus is always up. In our grown up minds this is something we need to change. We need to teach the little people to watch where they are going, to keep their eyes ahead. And we are so bloody wrong. Ok, on a health and safety level, they need to have some basic spacial intelligence and know that it is not ok to run recklessly around all the time – try telling the A&E nurse that she gashed her head because you told her to run around with her head in the clouds! But they also need to embrace their natural instinct and keep their minds up in the sky.
So there you have it. Deborah’s enlightened thought for the day. I dare you to try it. Try raising you eyes to the sky and feel the freedom that comes with it. If you really want to convince people that you have lost all of your marbles, try looking up and smiling. Force a smile and after a while it becomes impossible not to be actually smiling. And keep an eye out for me on the streets of Galway. I’ll be the mad one, wearing Jesus sandals and flowers in my hair, running around crashing into every lamp post and wall, with my eyes fixed to the sky and a crazy smile plastered on my face! You’d be mad not to join me!