The other day I lost something in my house. It wasn’t a simple, “I misplaced something.” It was a: “It was on the couch the last time that I saw it, but now it is nowhere to be found!” situation.
The way that I usually start looking for something that is lost is to look in the most obvious places first. The logical questions that I ask are:
- What have I cleaned up or changed that could have swept up this book with it?
- If it wasn’t part of the cleanup, where might I have put it that I thought was safe at the time?
- Who else might have moved it to somewhere unexpected?
When I still couldn’t find the book, I started a very methodical search on every floor of the house. I did extra tidying as I went along. At some point, I began to see how relaxing the regular rhythm of neatening and searching could be. Each room, drawer, shelf, and nook represented another section of completeness. By the time I combed each floor, I could say with certainty that the book was not there.
It made me reflect on how something very stressful (such as not being able to find what I need right now) can turn into something peaceful. The immediate feedback of completeness when I searched each section, was a reward in itself. While I won’t intentionally lose things from this point forward, I can appreciate the benefit of slowing down to make the search successful.
In the end, I found the book. It was buried in a box that I had brought downstairs when company came over. The joy of finding what I was looking for was the icing on the cake of the lessons I learned about searching.