August 3, 2014

Thinking Chair

There was a validation of a sort for me in this morning's New York Times. In a short interview, Sharon Sloane, CEO of Will Interactive, says

I do something every day that I call “chair time.” It’s my time at home at the end of the day. I just sit quietly, turn my phone off, and I let the day wash over me. What really happened today? Sometimes it’s realizing that maybe something was said that I didn’t really pick up on, or connecting a couple of dots.

My mother used to do that, too. I remember she would sometimes be sitting in the living room after a busy day. I’d say, “Mom, are you O.K.?” She’d say: “I’m fine. I’m just thinking about the day.” We have to be comfortable with silence, and I don’t think a lot of people are.

I used to make a point of starting the day in my thinking chair. Armed with a cup of coffee, I spent a few minutes away from the papers reflecting and maybe reviewing the challenges of the upcoming day. My wife used to think I was crazy, but it worked for me.

Just yesterday I uncovered a copy of A Year with Emerson. I was thinking that would be a fine thing to start my day with. I could keep myself really busy with Tolstoy's Calendar of Wisdom, A Year with Rumi, and Hal Borland's Twelve Moons of the Year. Time to dust the thinking chair off.