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« Vocational voyeurism - view from the inside | Main | Advice for new graduates »

May 18, 2006


Cara Trudeau

Great article! I wonder, though, how to focus on staying grounded when your spouse or significant other insists on maintaining the blur? When I pause, he gets impatient and insists on keeping going.

Curt Rosengren

Cara, the first thing that popped in my head when you said, "he gets impatient and insists on keeping going" was, "Well, let him."

His pace doesn't need to be your pace. How about something along the lines of, "Hey, I can appreciate that you feel the need for a fast pace like that. And here's what I need. I need time to slow down."

I've talked to a lot of people in that situation over the years - often women. They somehow feel compelled to keep up with the go-go pace of the others in their life, and don't give themselves the permission to slow down and replenish themselves.

Perhaps the first question to ask would be, "How do I want to ground? How is my husband's insistance on the blur affecting that? What do I need? What do I need to tell him I need? What does good self-care look like here? What's in my best interest?"

If you're not clear on that, and if you don't clearly communicate that, it runs the risk of looking (figuratively speaking) like the impatient parent pulling the kid along who wants to dawdle and look at things along the way.

Anyone else have any thoughts on this?


Hi Curt-
I've been keeping a photo journal for the last few months. It fulfills several intentions. First, I've gotten better at taking pictures.

I look around more, because I'm looking for a good picture for the day. There's weird and interesting stuff all around, if you look.

I've got lots more pictures of family and friends, which is delightful.

And finally, I've slowed down time. It's like the way Ray Bradbury describes bottling summer in "Dandelion Wine"-- here's the sunny day after a week of rain, the apple blossoms, the front steps buried in 16" of snow, the spaghetti dinner with friends on a cold winter night. It feels like less of a blur when I remember these moments.

Thanks for posting your Flikr photos, I've been enjoying them.


At the moment, #2 (stay in touch with yourself) and #9 (move) resonate with me.

I've moved my scrapbooking into a different direction, taking important artifacts from my past, properly preserving them, and documenting the stories behind them. It reminds me that while I might not be quite where I'd like to be right now, I've covered a lot of ground. And some of these career artifacts are tied to key moments in my history. For a child or a grandchild who might eventually pick up these books, they'd have some understanding of how I became who I am.

Walking is one of the few forms of exercise I enjoy. At the 2005 National Writers Workshop, Garrison Keillor talked about "staying close to the ground". Walking, he said, is the best way to stay close to the ground and he thought people should do it three or four hours a day (assuming they had the time).

I wish I had the time to walk that much, but the larger point was the importance of scheduling time into every day to do that -- whatever "that" is -- which keeps you grounded, connected to yourself and others. It creates physical, mental, and emotional space in your life -- helping you to work better, sleep better, relate better, live better.


What a great list. This is the kind of list we all should read once a day until it becomes a part of us.

Thanks for sharing!

Troy Worman

Awesome list. Thanks for the link.

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