I've been away from blogging for a few days because I spent the Labor Day weekend at a silence and meditation course. My task was to stay away from reading, the internet (email, web surfing, blogging, all of it), talking to others, and even prolonged nonverbal communication. I have to say, now that it is over, I have a new appreciation for how verbal and nonverbal communication act as a 'glue' in our lives. I began to feel the loss of human connection very quickly in the process and started to feel a little lonely.
There was one thing that saved me and kept me going, however. It was the 'seva', which is the Hindi word for service. The acts of service were small: picking up some tissues on the floor, throwing away used cups, serving food. The boost I got was that I felt that sense of belongingness to others that I wasn't able to get through talk.
Doing things for others gets us outside of ourselves, it puts our focus on others and gets us to think, "What can I do to improve things?" When we stop thinking only of ourselves, loneliness vanishes and energy and motivation rises up like a wave. This was certainly my experience over the weekend.
I'm not saying that you should competely stop thinking of yourself and just think of service all the time. That's not balanced and it's not practical. But I suggest taking a little time to see how you can serve others. What you can do to improve the situation for someone else. I guarantee you'll feel joy and strength. And energy, always energy.
See the first 11 tips below: