How to make time your friend
Growth and performance coach Wilma Allan runs Being At The Cottage retreats in the countryside near Abergavenny in Wales. Here she tells us how to befriend time – on retreat and beyond.
Many people are strapped for time. They’re busy. And that’s because there is a lot to do. But it’s also because they’re not living ‘in’ time. They’re screaming up and down the zip wire of time, shooting from the past to the future, without spending much time at all in the present moment.
We all have a different perception of time. Some people have too much time on their hands. After my mother died, my father told me when you’ve got all day to put a stamp on a letter, it takes all day to do it. Others are busy entrepreneurs, spinning plates and juggling balls. They wish they had more time.
But when we live our lives ‘in’ time, whether we’re away on retreat, or back home full of good intentions, that’s when we tap into synchronicity and special things happen. We connect to the source of pure potential and things fall into place perfectly for us.
Here are some ways in which we can live ‘in’ time, get it on our side, and make it work for – instead of against – us:
- Manage your mindset
Time is a mindset thing. If you think you have enough time, you’re right. Yet if you think you don’t have enough time, you’re also right. Catch yourself when you think or say something negative about time, like “There aren’t enough hours in a day,” or “I don’t have time to go out.” Switch it into a positive. Start believing and saying you have more than enough time.
- Think positive
Extend this practice to other thoughts as you have them. Negative, disempowering and ugly thoughts make you feel bad and lower your energy, while life-enhancing thoughts, which are full of possibility, make you feel uplifted. Try stopping one stream of thinking and changing it for something better.
- Be ‘in’ time
This isn’t about being prompt and punctual. It’s about being in the present moment, and giving your full attention to where you are and what you’re doing at that given time, whether you’re practising yoga, hiking in the hills, painting on retreat or just sitting still. Checking emails, for example, will burst that bubble and catapult you into being past or future focused again and you’ll no longer be in the moment.
- Get in flow
When you’re ‘in’ time and present, you open the door to the state of flow. You’ll open up to intuition and inspiration. You’ll have quicker insights and a sharper perspective. That doesn’t mean that life’s challenges will drop away, but you’ll instinctively know how to handle them.
- Expect magic
Just as blobs of ink from a fountain pen eventually join up on blotting paper, you’ll find your moments of being ‘in’ time will join up and you’ll be present more and more of the time. And when that happens, you’ll become a more effective person, more of the time. You’ll find coincidence and chance meetings happen, and life and events unfold effortlessly.
- Learn your lessons
Sometimes things go wrong and they don’t happen the way we want. On our retreats, guests learn that everything happens for a reason, and at the right time for that lesson to be learnt. It may not be obvious at the time though!
Plan ahead for a Being at the Cottage retreat in Abergavenny, UK
Re-opening on 1 August, Being at the Cottage runs solo retreats to help guests develop their vision for change through private coaching and carefully curated time out alone. Choose from a three-night Dabble, a four-day Delve or a seven-night Deepen retreat.
During the coronavirus pandemic, a week before their stay, guests will be asked to fill in a declaration form, stating they haven’t knowingly been in contact with anyone infected with Covid-19. If they have, they will be asked to rearrange their stay. In the cottage, everything will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected between guests, linens washed on the hottest setting, and there will be sanitisers and surgical gloves available.