Paying attention is the best investment I can make. I’ve collected numerous returns from putting stock in personal attentiveness.

Lately, I’ve become distracted by an intense job pursuit. This hunt feels like an encore at a heavy metal concert. Thunderous noise, super-charged energy, abundant motion, bright lights. The inner force has crowded my space to breathe and accept life’s flow.

Fast forward through what could become a literary dirge…

On my way home from today’s job hunt, I felt caught between anxiety and weariness. Slowly, I realized I haven’t taken my typical mini breaks throughout the day. Prior to this quest to find a steady job, I’d take 5-10 minutes to sit still, or at least pause to reflect. I’d gain clarity when I stopped longer than 16 ½ seconds at a time.

Today, I recognize I’ve neglected those regular investments of down time. I recalled how I’d sit somewhere relatively quiet, close my eyes and inhale. On the exhale, I’d simply say, “Thank you” and wait for my body to become more restful. I sometimes picture a speed boat entering a no-wake zone. No matter how fast that boat had been traveling prior to the driver downshifting, eventually those waves return to a more tranquil flow.  

My daily self-check-ins offer bigger vision perspective. Sometimes it seems like I don’t gain anything substantial from a break. Or I worry I’ll fall behind if I jump off the world’s agenda to catch my breath. (I admit, sometimes when my pace is slower or gentler, I mentally create scenarios or conversations just to fuel the habit of constant thought processing.  Although most of these imaginary situations or conversations never take place, they maintain my love-hate relationship with constant activity).

When I got home from my job hunt today, I wearily dragged myself onto my backyard deck, sat down, and breathed. I reminded myself that days don’t need to be as strenuous as I make them. When I take regular breaks, life makes more sense. Paying attention helps me gain clarity that overrides disparity.

On the job front, I trust there will be forward motion. In the meantime, I’m going to invest in solitude time. I anticipate significant returns.   

Invested in heaven’s job market,


saying with a loud voice: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain To receive power and riches and wisdom, And strength and honor and glory and blessing!” (Rev. 5:12).

Reader! Your turn.

What benefits do you receive when you invest in quiet?

What change, improvement, or inspiration have you received when you stopped to listen?

Share your comments so we can learn from each other!

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