Cultivating peace in daily life.

Today's Theme: Renewal

Renew your resources.

Theme for the 14th day of the month:

The wheel of life turns round and round. Sometimes the repetition can be exhausting. It can leave us feeling empty, used up, and worn out. The need for cyclic renewal—to be refreshed and regenerated by vibrant life forces—is basic to all of life, yet few people get enough genuine renewal these days. For many people, time “off” is used to catch up on chores and errands, and serves the mission of “getting things done.” It’s not easy to stop when there’s so much to do.

Everything we do takes energy. We draw on physical, emotional, social, mental, and spiritual reserves of energy every day. Renewing these resources is a cornerstone of health. Without sufficient renewal, we’re forced to draw on our “emergency” reserves to fulfill daily tasks. When this becomes a habit, it creates the condition of chronic stress and leads to a depleted state of body, soul, and spirit. Certainly, in this condition, we’re not at our best. Unfortunately, in our culture, this condition has become “normal.”

Renewal gives us a little time off the wheel. We sense when our reserves are low, and then intentionally take some time to replenish them. How we use that time is personal to our own needs and interests. What’s renewing for one might be just “one more thing to do” for another. We can receive life-giving, restorative energy through music, art, movement, meditation, prayer, poetry, nature, solitude, service, communication—anything that we find genuinely engaging and refreshing. Sometimes, we just need a good rest or a little free time.

Today’s theme honors the need for cyclic renewal, and invites us to explore its many benefits. Renewal gives us a chance to exhale and regain perspective. We temporarily disconnect from our preoccupation with the clock. We sort, prioritize, and generally clean the inner house.

In the time we dedicate to renewal, we realign with an inner compass that guides and directs our next steps. We open our minds and hearts, and the circumstances of our lives, to new and fresh impulses. We are made new again.

In an era when we’re expected to get as much done as possible, the need for renewal can be perceived as a sign of weakness or self-indulgence. Worse, it can be viewed as time wasted because it’s judged as unproductive. This is a condition that must be opposed, as it has become a tragic disorder of social life.

Without sufficient renewal, rhythms easily degenerate into dull, lifeless routines. Life gets flat and loses its color. Stress escalates and energy is lost. Thinking is easily distorted. Passivity, fatigue, and apathy interrupt creative responses to our challenges.

With renewal, it’s not so much what we do, but how and when we do it—the quality of our attention and the timing. We choose activities that enrich and refresh. We intentionally open ourselves to the vibrant life forces all around us, and allow this energy to flow through us like waves, restoring our reserves and cleansing fatigue and stress. We relax…and find the peace of the moment.

What will you do today to renew your resources?
What is the most important thing you can do
to renew your resources this month?

As we each honor the need for cyclic renewal, we bring fresh energy into our lives and new vitality to the rhythm of peace.

Rhythm of Peace:  Cultivating Peace in Daily Life
Download the Rhythm of Peace calendar of daily themes

Check back tomorrow for a new theme!

Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin. ~Mother Teresa