I spent last week trekking in the High Atlas mountains in Morocco. There were sixteen of us in the group and as the paths were narrow, we mostly walked in single file. One evening, Alan said to me (in his wonderful soft Dublin accent) ‘Can I ask you a question? Do you actually bend your knees when you walk downhill? I was walking behind you today and it was like you were gliding.’
I can assure you that is the first time ‘gliding’ has ever been used to describe any of my actions and I definitely don’t glide in my walking boots! As we talked more, it became apparent that what Alan was noticing is that, over the years, I have acquired a sense of adjusting my centre of gravity when going downhill in order to remain balanced. It doesn’t always work as the very colourful bruises and dented water bottle from a fall in the snow last week clearly demonstrate!
What I’ve discovered is this: being aware of my centre helps me balance.
Potters have to centre clay before they begin to throw a pot. They push the clay down into the centre of the wheel to ensure it is stable before they begin to tease out the form of a bowl or mug. If the clay is off-centre, it’s unbalanced as it spins and the end product will be misshapen and no good, however skilled the potter.
It may look easy but the potter needs to exert some force and concentration to achieve that centring.
You may be well aware of what provides your mental centre of gravity – perhaps it’s your family; your beliefs; time alone; time with others; working in your garden; doing something creative; taking a bath; working up a sweat. It can take some effort to maintain that centre of gravity though, can’t it? Have you noticed what happens when your centre of gravity is out of kilter?
Today’s pebble for you to think about:
What will you do this week to maintain or regain your centre of gravity?
What do you think?
Turning over pebbles is the blog of Thinking Space Coaching.
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