Just For Today

Just for today, stop trying. Just for today, stop trying to be better, bigger, smaller, different.

Stop trying to quiet your mind. Stop trying to get more exercise. Stop trying to be a better friend. Stop trying to keep your kids happy or entertained. Stop trying to eat well. Stop trying not to feel guilty. Stop trying to let work go on the weekends. Stop trying to get work done on the weekends. Stop trying to be more organized. Stop trying to have a good hair day.

Stop trying to have a clean toilet. Stop trying to get over it, through it, or past it. Stop trying to lose weight. Stop trying to firm up your belly or your skin. Stop trying to ignore the pain. Stop trying to care more or care less. Stop trying to be a great writer, a more inventive cook.

Stop trying to be compassionate. Stop trying to be patient. Stop trying to pretend anything. Stop trying to move on. Stop trying to let go. Stop trying to hold on. Stop trying to figure anything out.

If you have a cat, follow your cat’s lead. If you have a dog, follow your dog’s lead. If you have a turtle, follow your turtle’s lead. If you have a kid, follow your kid’s lead.

This could mean crying in a puddle one minute and splashing in one the next. Eating chocolate pudding for dinner. Napping all day and not getting a damn thing done. Going for a walk in the woods. Rearranging the furniture. Curling up in a little ball without apology. Washing the windows or writing on the walls.

If you don’t have a cat or a dog or a kid or a turtle, look out the window. Follow the lead of a branch on a tree, of a crocus bud, a breeze. Follow the lead of a songbird, a garbage truck. The whole world is your mirror.

If you don’t have a window on the world, follow the sounds in your house, in your room, in your body. Follow the farts and the burps and the sighs and cries.

If nothing else, if all else fails, if it’s just too hard, or too easy, or too anything, then just follow your breath. Just for a day. Just for an hour. Just for ten minutes. Just for this one moment.

And then, stop trying that, too. Stop trying to follow your cat, your dog, your turtle, the lamppost, your breath. Then see what happens. And be sure to let me know.

11 thoughts on “Just For Today

  1. mb says:

    chocolate puddin’ for dinner? sounds good to me.

    yes yes yes, i accept you into my tribe…or perhaps i acknowledge that we are from the same tribe.



  2. Lillithmother says:

    i’m on the same wave length jena…just accepting what comes, what is, what will be and not fighting, controlling, supressing, exposing, judging…

    i really needed to see this today…thank you!

    ps. i moved ~ and not anonymous anymore, it’s too damn exhausting. if you care to visit, lovergrower.blogspot.com


  3. bella says:

    Thank-you for this breath of fresh air.
    I’m the queen of trying, so I can even manage to try really hard too not try. :)
    thanks for gently showing me the way out of the madness. :)


  4. PixieDust says:

    How can I say no?


    I’m enjoying some tea here at work, but I know when I make it home it will be a big mug-full of hot chocolate…. mmmmmmmmm……



  5. Jena Strong says:

    Shawn – ; ) back atcha!

    Tamara – Welcome. Glad you let me know you’re here.

    mb – indeed, we are.

    Lil, you Love Grower – here’s to resting out in the open.

    Bella – Yes, here’s to not trying together.

    pixiedust – Delicioso!

    Lisa – Anytime.


  6. marta says:

    Reminds me of something my dad would say–You’re all the time trying, don’t you do anything?

    It goes with his “you’re all the time thinking, don’t you know anything” line.

    Okay, so I’m not trying to not try. But I am eating a popsicle.



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