The fine art of appearing to do nothing
Note from Maggie: This little story is about me. I have not been specific about how I used EFT at various places along the way. There are plenty of articles that outline more specifically how I have used EFT for myself and others. Please just know that EFT has been and still is an integral part of my coming home to myself, to my being in peace within myself and therefore, more of a force for good in the world.
Mother had swept into the room a moment earlier. Her demanding voice interrupted what had been a sweet and serene quiet.
“What are you doing just sitting there? Clean your room. Go outside and sweep the sidewalk. Idle hands are the devil’s playground. Move it young lady!”
At eleven years old, I didn’t know any better and actually thought for a moment about what I would like to do, while, hands firmly planted on hips, she waited.
“The river is smooth as glass today. I think I’ll row my rowboat.” I said, realizing that I couldn’t just sit there and daydream anymore of – among other things – a better mother.
“Do something productive. That’s play. That won’t get you anywhere. You could help me by ironing your father’s shirts.”
I can’t remember which non choice I opted for. I do remember that moments like these led to my becoming a raging workaholic with an undeniable belief that if I wasn’t being productive, with something that “mattered”, I wouldn’t get very far in life.
Whether or not something mattered to me was inconsequential of course. It had to matter to authority, the boss, my mother, my father, anyone who was adult and anyone but me.
And that was the least of it. The message was loud and clear.
If I wasn’t doing something productive, I could perhaps, on an otherwise peaceful and quiet day - disappear. Maybe even forever.
When good things happened in my early career, I thought I was lucky.
To be the first woman hired as a professional instead of a secretary was lucky.
When I was asked to be the voice of a national marketing campaign, that was really lucky.
When I was the first woman to be paid and given the title of manager at a very male oriented national corporation, that was amazingly lucky.
What I did not realize then is that I was working harder – and probably smarter – than any of the other girls and most of the men. Yes, that’s right. In those days, we were still girls and they were men.
In the early eighties, quite a success in business, but as uptight and mental as could be, I was told that I needed to slow down.
“Meditate”, they said.
“Meditate or you’ll someday have to medicate.”
What in the world did that mean? Meditation was doing nothing and that was not allowed if I wanted to be somebody and get somewhere.
“The somewhere you are going,” a small voice inside me said, “is into a coffin if you don’t learn to stop and smell the roses.”
Consequently, over the last thirty five years or so, I have been changing my ways. Ever so slowly and ever so surely.
The first unconscious belief I was able to change was the “gotta work hard” one. I came up with something I liked much better, “Work Smart.” When I think about it, I still worked 50 hour weeks, but I was learning. The door was open and it was a step in the right direction.
The more I became a part of the various spiritual communities that were springing up around me, the more confusing it got.
“Rest. Nurture yourself If you don’t take care of yourself, nobody else can. Your desires are at least as important as others.”
These platitudes were met with one resounding word,
Somehow I made it through the myriad of conflicting messages. And it wasn’t easy back then. It has been much easier since I discovered EFT in the late 90s. What a difference that has made to my journey from frantic to centred, from frustrated to peaceful, from a difficult life to a smooth and flowing life.
It has been a long journey and at age 76 I am healthier and younger than I have been in many years. I attribute much of that healing, both internal and external, to the various ways I have used EFT for myself.
And along the way I have learned to cultivate the fine art of
to do nothing. After all, we are called human beings, not human doings, are we not? And the fact is that it is actually impossible to do nothing. When appearing to do nothing, we could be doing something really important. Something such as:
But here’s the really exciting part. I have finally got it, loud and clear yet soft as a Tibetan bell. And thank you again, EFT, for continually and gently leading me to this place in my life.
It is not what I am doing or not doing that is important It is the energy brought forth in that doing or not doing that fills the universe. My job is to fill it with peace and love from within me. That energy creates all else.
And there’s more. I believe I can bring more goodness to humankind and this planet appearing to do nothing with my heart soft and my mind at peace than you can running around at top speed wishing you could do more.
On a really good day, I contentedly and happily allow the cultivation of the fine art of “appearing” to do nothing for at least a little while. And do I continue to do EFT?
You bet !!
Maggie Adkins, EFT Founding Master