Pausing for Breath in the Doctor’s Surgery
If I mentioned doctor’s surgeries and receptionists – what mental picture does this conjure up for you? For me, it is often a place where everyone is stressed! From the receptionists, through to the doctors and the patients in between. The patients, feeling unwell and worried, wanting to be seen as soon as possible. The receptionists often facing a barrage of telephone calls and face-to-face interactions with patients who all want to be seen yesterday and trying to juggle their needs and the capacity/workload of the doctors and nurses in their surgery. The doctors and nursing staff working flat out, seeing patient after patient on a time limit for each appointment. Just writing this made me feel stressed so it’s no wonder feelings of anger, impatience, helplessness, victim-hood are rife in this environment.
Well, last week I rocked up at the reception and signed in by computer (so didn’t have to speak to a receptionist), waited 10 minutes for my appointment and was seen in a timely manner. So far so good! But then I had to go back to reception to make a follow up appointment. I arrived at the window where 4 receptionists were busy on the phone or tapping away at their computer. Eventually one of them saw me and waved me impatiently to another window. I took a deep breath and asked for another appointment. I could literally feel the tension in the air.
Suddenly I heard the familiar sound of my daily alarm which is set at 11 58 am and whenever I hear this, it is a reminder for me to PAUSE, no matter what I am doing, and to connect with my One Spirit Interfaith community. 800 Ministers connecting to the Source simultaneously. It is a beautiful practice and always brings me to a place of peace and calm from which I can emerge and continue my day with a deeper sense of connection. The alarm is quite loud (no coincidence then that I had just had the wax removed from my ears!) And it is a mixture of pan pipes and the sounds of the ocean. I found myself apologising to the receptionist and telling her that it was a signal for me to pause and close my eyes and breathe into my heart.
At this point, she closed her eyes and put both her hands in the position of yoga mudra (this stimulates the brain and creates energy in the body) and visibly lengthened her breath. She didn’t do this for long. It couldn’t have been more than 30 seconds but when she opened her eyes and returned to the business of the day, she was visibly calmer and more connected. She joked about being too old for yoga and found me a convenient appointment. When she said goodbye she spoke in a more meaningful way. We’d made a small connection. We’d had a little laugh. We’d connected to our hearts and the stress and tension had definitely diminished.
I came away marvelling at how easy it could be for all of us to change how we are feeling and to find that place of peace and calm particularly in challenging situations. My daily morning meditation is to practice Heart breathing for 45 minutes and then during the day, when I remember, I pause, breathe into my heart for a few breaths and then continue with what I was doing. This helps me to shift difficult feelings, connect to my heart and hopefully make a more informed decision from the place of my higher self rather than my head which is often going round and round in circles. I don’t always close my eyes as it depends what I am doing and definitely not recommended if you’re driving!
Why don’t you try it now?
Close your eyes
Focus on your breath
Imagine you are breathing in and out of your heart for 3 or 4 breaths
Open your eyes.
Do let me know whether that had an effect on you. Until the next time, this is Louise de Caux Listening to the Call of My Heart