For the longest time, we worked with this model of the compass without including the concept of centering. The right answer seemed to be God at the center of this model, but the model is about what I, as a human being in relationship to others, pay attention to. As we wrestled with what seemed like an “either/or” problem, we realized that centering provides a “both/and” solution.
When I center, I focus on my breathing. When God created humanity, God breathed the divine breath into God’s creation. The human breath represents both the divine and the human in the experienced moment.
And what we know about family life is there is a uniqueness about every single experienced moment that our family goes through. Centering is about being present to that unique moment to choose what we focus our attention on and to be consciously aware of everything happening around us without deciding in advance how things should turn out.
When I center, I focus my attention (focus) in this moment (now) and listen with an open heart and mind (without judgment). When you think of centering, you may think of something that monks do or something that we do when we’re away from the busyness of our lives. At North Georgia Family, we think that centering is the key to navigating the moment-to-moment challenges that we encounter in our very busy, sometimes chaotic lives. Perhaps think of it as making sure you’re maintaining your lane as you’re driving 70 miles per hour down the highway. Being centered offers us the choice of how to respond to whatever situation we face – and it’s a lot like a muscle, it has to be exercised to be available when we need it.
Try it for 6 weeks to give it time to become a habit. It doesn’t take long to focus on our breathing, now, without judgment; and this one little change just might make a big difference.