The Grammar Of Life

When I was in school, one of the things that was relentlessly drilled into me was grammar – the structural rules of communication. As such, everything I wrote was assessed - at least in part – for grammar. Anyone who has experienced this, no doubt remembers getting their ‘masterpiece’ returned with a myriad of red tick marks, identifying grammatical errors.

One of the grammar killers was the run on sentence - a sentence in which two or more independent clauses (i.e., complete sentences) are joined without an appropriate punctuation or conjunction. Evidently this was okay for famous authors experiencing ‘stream of consciousness, but not for English students!

Anyway, I want to use this point to explore what many people experience in real life today. A busy life can often seem like a run on sentence. People can move through a series of activities – often not even related – in a seamless manner. This can lead to the feeling of being busy – maybe even too busy – but is not necessarily productive. Nor is it necessarily fulfilling!

How often have you been through a hectic period and not even remembered exactly what you did? This is the life version of the run on sentence!

What might help is adding a little punctuation to your life – a few dashes, commas or periods. Renowned teacher Pema Chodren suggests noticing the run on nature of what is happening and taking three conscious breaths – a simple pause and focus on three in and out breaths. In that short interval, you will be amazed at how quickly your brain actually responds.

Try it. As your coach would suggest “what’s the worst thing that can happen”?