Ships Passing

Jim:    Ah, where’s your ship going?  Welcome to Fishing Without Bait.  A lifetime without definitive expectations.  My name is Jim Ellermeyer.  I’m a behavioral health therapist.  And, today as always I’m joined by my good friend, producer of this program, and co-host – Mr. Mike.  Mr. Mike, sometimes we talk about ships passing in the night.  We talk about time being transitory.  We talk about life encounters.  We talk about how people we wish we would see or wish we would not see.  About encounters we’ve had.  About memories that we’ve had in our lives.  And, the main thrust of this show – through our concept of full-impact mindfulness, is to be present and alive and live in each moment.

Mike:    Absolutely.  It’s a state of mind.

Jim:    And, again, when we talk about paying attention on purpose and we talk about paying attention on purpose with kindness – I reached out to an individual who I’ve been attempting to reach out and contact with as I really care for them, and enjoy their company.  However, they’re always too – what’s that word?

Mike:    Busy.

Jim:    Busy.  People are too busy.  

Mike:    I’m familiar with that term.

Jim:    So, perhaps we could get together sometime.  If we weren’t so busy.  Well, I’m going to throw my challenge out there to everyone out there today – how busy are you?  If you’re too busy for yourself, I would suggest you’re too busy.  Look through your life.  Look through your closets of life and find out things that you haven’t worn – things that you haven’t experienced in years.  Do you really need them?  Let’s declutter.  Let’s declutter your life.  Again, Mike, we often find out in life what’s important.  How does it feel when you reach out to someone and they say that would be great if we only had time.  Perhaps we can schedule something in the future.

Mike:    Right.  Initially, if you get that kind of response, and you have to wade through their schedule and everything you feel like you don’t matter as much as everything else going on in their life.

Jim:    There you go.  You don’t feel important enough for them to schedule you.  So, quite often I won’t beg or ask when we can get together – oh please, when can we get together.  It’s been so long since we talked.  I would really love to see you.  As these are challenge podcasts we like to challenge life, do we not?  Full-impact mindfulness.  We’re not sitting back waiting for a reaction.  We’re not looking to help people find themselves.  We’re looking to help people create themselves.

Mike:    And, there’s another side of that of, you know, kind of sitting around and waiting for that person, too.  If I find somebody is too busy for me, then I’m going to move on to the next thing.

Jim:    And, as in a previous podcast, Mike, where we suggested that possibly the person that you’ve really been waiting for is yourself.

Mike:    Absolutely.  Because you make your own path.  And, not just scheduler.  

Jim:    So, I will throw out – give me a reason why we cannot get together.  Convince me that we can’t get together.  Convince me that you’re too busy.  I’ll challenge people.  I’ll challenge people, places, things, and situations.  It’s not so much as what I can get out of situations as what I can bring to them.  Remember, Mike, time is transitory.  We often talk about time, do we not?  So, am I going to structure my life according to a clock?  Am I going to structure my life according to a planner?  Am I going to structure my life according to a calendar?  Or am I going to be right here and right now?  If I’m thinking about you – if I’m thinking about you, Mike, I’ll call you.  I’ll reach out to you.  I’m not going to schedule you in two weeks from now to think about you.  

Mike:    And, isn’t there less friction in doing that these days?  With the connections and devices?  And, even just sending a text message.  It’s a communication path.  You know?  People think I have to pick up the phone.  Even if you’re just sending that little bit and saying hi on some other format.

Jim:    One of the wonderful things about all this technology it is instantaneous communication and reaching out to someone.  Just making it known to someone that you’re thinking about them and that you’re available.  

Mike:    Absolutely.  It’s so heartening to see – just the other day I was talking about something in my travels.  As you know, I’ve been traveling a good bit for work, right Jim?

Jim:    Yes.

Mike:    And, you know, I’m in Nebraska of all places.  And, my friend who is a truck driver started responding about things in the area that I was talking about online.  And, again, you know – it was a chance for reconnection there that we get to do every once in a while.  And, despite not having the opportunity to see each other in person because of distances it’s an opportunity to still be there and make that time and be in the moment for each other.

Jim:    So, we often talk, Mike, about living life on wishes and hopes.  Gee, I wish I could see Mike.  Oh, I hope we can get together someday.  The idea is is there’s two words that mean the most in any recovery – and we’re all in recovery from something.  There are two words that mean the most in life.  And, I hope everyone pays attention and listens. And, they’re action and effort.  Action, and effort.  Give me a reason why you and I can’t get together.  Give me a reason – convince me you’re too busy for us to get together, Mike.  Give me a reason why we can’t schedule a time together.  Give me a reason.

Mike:    But, Jim, I’m so busy with all this work, and my family, and the traveling, and all this, Jim.

Jim:    This is when time stops.  When we ask people what time is it?  What time is it?  It’s right now.  Where are you at?  I’m right here.  It’s right now.  This is when life’s happening, my friend.  So, I would ask you a gentle confrontation – Mike, how busy are you?  How important are you?  How many pies do you have your fingers into?  How many stones do you have in that jar that you have your hand wrapped around that you can’t pull yourself out and be free?  Is time your ally?  Or is time your enemy?

Mike:    And, that’s really your perspective of how you go about things, right?  If you feel that you’re too busy and you’re always fighting that schedule.  You’re like, there’s not enough, there’s not enough, there’s not enough.  And, then it’s like – or the phrase I’ll rest when I’m dead.  It’s such a reductive way of doing it, because you’re looking at this meter of things running out in the future.  You’re again doing that time traveling in a way, right?  Kind of in reverse.

Jim:    And, again we get back to using time as currency.  How am I going to spend the most valuable asset that I have?  How am I going to pay attention and invest my currency?  Invest my time?  And, the best way for my life?  And, again, we talk about many subjects here.  We talk about what’s important.  Well, what’s important to you?  I’m challenging everyone out there to take an inventory of your life.  I’m sure there are many people in your life that are so important to you that perhaps you haven’t reached out to in a very long time.

Mike:    Absolutely.  And, if you make yourself too busy and don’t step back you often forget about that.  And, you keep putting more distance between yourself and them.

Jim:    So, here’s a thought I’m going to put in everyone’s face out there.  If you’re too busy for yourself, my friends – you are too busy.  Or, to be even more direct – how important are you?  How important are you that you cannot return my phone call?

Mike:    Isn’t that an interesting thing – how important are you, you know, to all the things that you feel obligated to?  Yet, take yourself out of the situation.  Have yourself disappear from all those things that you feel so attached and so burdened and so obligatory to, right?  Would they go on without you?

Jim:    Well, there’s no such thing as the indispensable man.  There’s no such thing as the indispensable woman.  There’s no such thing as the indispensable person.  So, my question is – with all this energy that you’re expending, what are you receiving from it?  Perhaps we’ll go back to our old quote again.  There was an individual sitting along the side of the road, and they were sitting under an apple tree enjoying the nice sunny day when a business man walks past and he throws a dollar down.  And, the person says I didn’t ask for a dollar.  And, he says well I thought you might need it.  You’re there doing nothing.  He says, hmm, well what do I do with this dollar? He says well, you can make more of them.  You can get a job and invest it and make more money.  Hmm what would I do with more money the man asked.  Well, you could buy a house.  Hmm.  What would I do with a house?  Well, you could get in the house and then you could make more money, work harder, and then you could buy some beautiful furniture.  Some outside.  Have the lawn maintenance and drapes and have just a beautiful home.  Oh, and then what would I do?  Well, then you would work harder and then you would have people work for you to do those things.  Hmm, then what would I do?  Well, eventually after you’ve made enough money and had everything done, then you could take it easy.  And, the man looked up and said, well, that’s what I’m doing now.  So, the idea is this individual sitting under that tree was life surfing.  And, that’s one of the things we often talk about.  When we surf through life, time’s transietory.  We want to flow through life.  Do you want to plod through life and make it hard-going?  Or would you rather flow?  

Mike:    What is the old phrase a poet once said?  Mo money mo problems?  

Jim:    Mo money, mo problems.  Then, go with the flow.  If you want to go with the flow.  And, that means being flexible.  We often talk about being willing rather than willful, do we not?  

Mike:    Absolutely.

Jim:    And, if we go back to our old friend the Buddha again, we’ve talked about this in a previous podcast, where the Buddha was talking to a bunch of his disciples in the middle of a forest and they were having a good conversation when a man comes up in an obvious state of distress screaming and yelling saying oh my goodness, have you seen my cows?  Have you seen my cows, I don’t know where they’re at.  I don’t know what I’m going to do. And, the Buddha said, oh I regret I haven’t seen your cows.  And, the man ran off screaming moo, moo cows, calling for cows.  And, the Buddha turns around to his disciples and said aren’t you grateful you don’t own any cows?  How many cows do you have in your life?  How many cows do you need?  So, the idea of this challenge podcast is to separate between your wants and your needs.  Separate between your wants and your needs.  And, most people cannot differentiate the difference.  

Mike:    Do I want that house?  Do I want to work harder and get that house?  Or, do I need to do that?  Or is it simply something I want?  Is it just an attainable idea that gives you a sense of moving forward?

Jim:    Indeed.  Do you own your life, or does your life own you?  Do you work to live?  Or do you live to work?  What is the idea?  And, our philosophy here on Fishing Without Bait is that we hope that you never work again.  We hope that if what you’re doing in your life becomes a job then you quit – quit that job and move onto something else that you find beneficial and productive in your life.  Not only for yourself, but for others.  To walk through life without definitive expectations.  To not set definitive goals.  To walk forward with the best of intentions.  To use your wise mind.  To make the most of every moment.  We challenge everyone out there to use your time as currency.  Invest your money.  Invest your currency.  And, when we’re talking about ships passing in the night, we’re talking about making each encounter special and memorable.  The first time my granddaughter ever held my hand.  The first time that my grandson ever hugged me.  Those are special times.  Those ships didn’t pass in the night.  I was present and aware for each and every moment.  I stopped time.  And, you can do the same thing.  You can stop time anytime you choose.  Paying attention on purpose.  And, as we move from each moment to each moment, those moments become timeless.   You can become immortal.  Flow through your life.  Be right where you’re at.  Do a kindness for another.  Do a kindness for yourself.  Namaste.