Over the last week, quite a few times I have been faced with somebody saying, “I am not sure I am doing enough of the Recipe.” As I responded to each person, I referenced a previous post. Today, I will reference it as a reminder for all of you as well.
Doing. Taking action to lay a strong foundation in your recovery is what it takes. In Not Always So, Suzuki states, “To be completely concentrated on what you do, that is simplicity. And the beauty of practice is that it can be extended endlessly. You cannot say our way is quite easy or that it is very difficult. It is not difficult at all. Everyone can do it, but to continue it is rather difficult. Don’t you think so?”
Applying Suzuki’s wisdom to the Parkinson’s Recipe for Recovery®, it looks like this: “To be completely concentrated on what you do, that is simplicity. And the beauty of practice is that it can be extended endlessly. You cannot say that the Recipe is quite easy or that it is very difficult. It is not difficult at all. Everyone can do it, but to continue it is rather difficult. Don’t you think so?”
Doing. Taking action to lay a strong foundation in your recovery is what it takes.
Even if you do not have the time or energy to do the entire Recipe each day, do some of the Recipe each day with gratitude for what you can do and without self-judgment or self-criticism for not doing all of it. This will help you lay a strong foundation. Here is an example:
A single sheet of copy paper is seemingly weightless with very little form or substance. If each day you put one single sheet of copy paper on top of the sheet from the day before, in 500 days, you have a ream of paper with a weight of 5 pounds. In 5,000 days, you have a case of ten reams of paper with a weight of 50 pounds.
But wait, how did you get from a flimsy sheet of copy paper to a case of paper weighing 50 pounds? Doing! Taking action each day by doing something as simple as putting one more flimsy sheet of paper on top of the piece of paper from the day before. The hard part is placing the sheet of paper on top of the one from the day before. The hard part is doing this every day with faith that in the end you will have your 50 pound case of copy paper.
Looking at the Recipe, do what you can to lay your strong foundation, and do it every day. Here is a simple suggestion:
The soul: Gratitude. Action. Write down three things for which you are grateful. Do this every day.
The mind. Calm the mind. Action. Sit zazen (or meditation of choice) for at least 5 minutes. Do this every day.
The body. Physical part of the Recipe. Action. Do at least one of the physical parts of the Recipe in its entirety or for at least five minutes. Do this every day.
If you can do more than this, then do it. If this is all you can do, then do it. Whatever part or parts of the Recipe you are doing, taking action to lay your strong foundation means doing it every day.
I have been asked in the past, “Did you really do the Recipe every day?” My response has been simple and consistent, “I don’t know about your Parkinson’s, but my Parkinson’s did not take a day off, so I did not take a day off.” However, I also stopped doing the physical part of the Recipe the day of my full recovery and have not done it since. The mind and soul parts became part of how I live my life.
What are you doing, right here, right now? How about taking action and laying a strong foundation for your recovery!
You are worth it!!!
All my best,