Finding Rest in Maui

I’m not a Type A personality that moves at a fast pace, I’m not a procrastinator who leaves everything to the last minute and then rushes to get things done. I’m a plodder…. a steady eddy, easy going kind of person.  My third grade teacher called me the tortoise that beat the hare, and that has stuck with me all my life. Knowing these things about myself, I operated under the false assumption that because “I was easy going, I didn’t need to take time to rest.” I thought that because I moved at such a slow pace, I never really wore myself out.” It turns out that even turtles need to rest. Because turtles are just as susceptible to feeling tired as hares. Our version of tired just looks different. Our schedules may have events more spread out than hares, but we still have energy that gets used and needs to be replenished. So how have I been replenishing my body and soul? By sleeping, and taking time off work, and traveling. As I write this post I’m sitting on on a lounge chair in Maui writing and listening to the trade winds. This isn’t my first time to Maui, and it won’t be my last. I was lucky enough to spend 2 1/2 months working on Maui in 2016. That experience made a HUGE impact on my life. The people of Maui value the human connection over everything else. They are not a group of people that want to be rushed, they want to spend time connecting with their community and their island. They are genuine and generous. These are the people that taught me what it meant to take the time out of my day to genuinely connect with myself and the people around me.  Maui is where I internalized what it meant to get outside and learn to be quiet. Being quiet is Oceana practice much like meditation. It can be insanely frustrating, but ultimately soul quenching. I’ve found the natural beauty of Maui and slower pace of life on island to be an easier place to access my quiet time. When you can sit in the sand and listen to the ocean or hear the trade winds blow through the palm trees, it’s not hard to take a step back and just pause to enjoy the beauty. The challenge happens when I head home and have to balance normal life with the practice of being quiet. What I am practicing right now is being present in my vacation. This allows me to stop ruminating about what awaits me when I get home to Minnesota. It helps me pay attention to the lessons and memories I want to bring home with me. When I get home, I want to continue my practice of taking moments to be quiet. I want to sit in my backyard and listen to the birds. I want to take my dog for a walk. I want to remember to take time for quiet when I return to the mainland purely because it refreshes my soul.

 


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