I spent about four hours today applying a fresh coat of stain to our fence. I completed about 25% of the job. We have a lot of fencing and I’ll spend a good part of Sunday knocking out another big section.
But today, what I felt with each pass of the brush, and as each foot of board went from dull to bright, from dirty to clean, was the pleasure of being present to something so common, so basic.
I have been glued to the news these past few weeks, relentlessly refreshing and devouring the latest take on the latest twists and turns. I didn’t realize how consumed I was by it all until I was outside in the breeze of a mild October day simply, steadily painting my fence.
Today was both reprieve and reminder. I don’t know if I have enough fencing or enough stain to reset myself completely but I’m going to make the most of what I’ve got. And I am reminded how quickly I can get out of balance and how necessary it is to find simple ways to reconnect to what is, in fact, within my control.
DAVID BERRY is the author of “A More Daring Life: Finding Voice at the Crossroads of Change” and the founder of RULE13 Learning. He speaks and writes about the complexity of leading in a changing world. Connect with him on Twitter at @berrydavid.