When life is proceeding at breakneck pace, I tell myself there's no time for self-examination. But I have learned from experience, that if I don't take the time, my happiness goes out the window.
When I stop, pain comes in. Sometimes it's a tidal wave -- like the time right after my mother died. Other times, it's so subtle that I have to make a decision to listen to my heart. It can be as simple as I feel ugly today.
It is my responsibility to take care of me. It's my job to take the time I need to find out what's going on inside of me. If I address it, I can get back on track and have a good day. If I ignore it, very likely it will grow and I will make my molehill into a mountain.
So here's what I do. I check in with Me. I say, "How you doin'" I answer as truthfully as I can. I say, "I woke up mad." I say, "About what?" I answer, "I'm mad at my daughter for not folding the towels." I say, "Oh." Then I pray, "God, I can't let go of my daughter not folding the towels. Will you help me?" I sit quietly for a few seconds. Then I proceed about my day. Much later, I realize I have not thought about towels."
It works if I act. When I face the problems inside me first, the problems outside of me shrink in size.