Daring to stay present

Daring to stay present in a time of uncertainty.

I’ll confess that the last week has been tough for me. My emotions have been more volatile. I have felt the real uncertainty around the future of both higher education and the South African economy.

It occurs to me today that perhaps the greatest temptation under such circumstances is to rail against those in power who seem to be making outrageous decisions. It isn’t that bad decisions potentially directly affecting my life (and those of millions of others!) are not being made. But rather that expending my energy in that way is utterly pointless.

Yes, I should own my frustration, anger, fear, grief and anxiety. The challenge is to allow myself to feel what I feel so that it can pass through me. Railing against those in power can feel like the easier option!

In a time of deep uncertainty I am going to be blindsided by different emotions at unexpected times. Okay. So be it. But I still need to show up in my life .

So now what?

I think that I need to make sure that I am attending to precisely the tasks that my life is presenting me. It feels terribly mundane and trivial, but actually no one is inviting into any space that I would think of as being more significant. So I have to trust that I am exactly where I am meant to be.

I will do my best to be present to every person who shows up. I will consider, in a broader sense, where my teaching may be alienating to some people in my classes. I will be discerning about what I post on social media. I will pray for the grace of wisdom for those in leadership.

But most importantly, I will embrace entirely my own sphere of influence. I will show up and consciously make the choices which are mine to make. And I will do my best not to play armchair quarterback.


6 thoughts on “Daring to stay present

  1. Mags, what you have written is exactly what God calls each of us to do in our own circumstances every day of our lives. Be present and be authentic and intentional. Blessings and prayers for you and for all people in difficult circumstances.

  2. Good post, Mags. This would be my go-to response, too, and if I’m honest, I might question whether it was too defensive or self-protecting, so it was heartening to see you bringing to the fore the way that your personal sphere of influence interacted with wider circles. Keeping conscious and awake and keeping your own contributions as clean and as careful as possible – surely this is a worthy response to the question many ask in chaotic sitches like this, “But what can *I* do?”

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