“Drought is not an indicator to give up but to make changes for the better” – Anonymous
The Drought Crisis
Lake Mead, America’s most significant natural reservoir, is receding to unprecedented lows. It serves around 25 million people from Arizona to Mexico. This summer, it plummeted to 27% of its capacity. This trend is happening to other reservoirs as well. In Texas, dinosaur tracks from over 113 million years ago were recently discovered after a riverbed in a park dried up. The lack of rain and relentless heat waves across the globe has made shrinking rivers a common feature. Similar to the above drought crisis, we are all facing threats to the climate of our hearts.
The Changing Climate of Our Hearts
Life should be lived from the inside out, not vice versa. Drought happens in the heart when our reservoirs of compassion, kindness, and other values that promote civility are dried up by the heat waves of strife, virtue signaling, hatred, violence, wars, racism, and tensions created by global inflation. How do we replenish the reservoirs that create value in the heart?
This dilemma came into full view for me this year as I embarked on my fifth year of blogging. I learned that the climate of my heart is crucial to the quality of my writing. What I allow to take up residence in my heart and mind influences my writing. With no value in my heart, the content I write suffers. Instead of writing from the reservoir of hopeful realism, pessimism, skepticism, and cynicism dictate my pen.
This year by far is my most challenging writing season. My writing growth lagged from repeated disruptions from the time I set apart from writing. These interruptions and distractions were unavoidable but took a toll on my writing. I left my blog writing till the last minute for some weeks. It wasn’t until I read this from Atomic Habits author James Clear that I learned the inevitability of interruptions and how to navigate them without experiencing a mental drought:
“Life presents an endless series of interruptions and distractions. When your day is interrupted or your progress stalls, it’s easy for your mindset to collapse as well. You may feel guilty for not following through on what you intended to do. But you are not guilty, you are human.
Everyone gets distracted. In many ways, the real divide is between those who get back on track quickly and those who let interruptions expand into longer periods of inactivity.
Top performers get back on track faster than most. This is the skill to develop. You will be interrupted, but you can choose to keep it brief.”
While we may not avoid interruptions, we can decide not to regress but to recover and return to the path of progress. It is tempting to use interruptions as a reason for the lack of progress, but I believe that these interruptions are the test of how badly we want to accomplish something. This is the challenge we all face in a world ridden with distractions.
The Quality Challenge
Guarding the climate of our hearts is as difficult as trying to guard against global climate change. Left and right, pollutants abound, and most are found in the media. Not all media we consume is heart or mind friendly. Weight the media you consume. Binge media consumption requires one thing: your presence. Deliberate media consumption requires more than your presence. It calls for an attentive mind that asks three questions:
- What kind of media do I take in daily?
- How deliberate am I with the media I consume?
- How is the media I consume influencing my life on a daily basis?
What we take in eventually becomes what we live out. The quality of our lives is directly proportional to our hearts and minds. How do we overcome mental droughts and replenish the reservoirs within us that produce high-quality living? This question will be answered using the following topics this month:
Guard the Climate of Your Heart (Today’s post)
Debottlenecking (Arriving 9/8/2022)
What Are You Building? (Arriving 9/15/2022)
How To Sustain What You Start (Arriving 9/22/2022)
Throwback Blog Post (Arriving 9/29/2022)
Final Thought: Droughts don’t happen because there’s a lack of something. It can happen where there is an abundance of low-quality inputs. Climate change created by heat waves causing dried-up reservoirs results from pollutants in the atmosphere. Our hearts and minds experience droughts when we consume low-quality inputs leading to poor outputs in our lives. Change the input and you will undoubtedly change the output.
Keep on Keeping on!
https://lite.cnn.com/en/article/h_beeb589e2d11addeeb1cc5bc593eaf38. Accessed on August 30th, 2022