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Posts Tagged ‘inner peace’

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2016 has been a very chaotic year, hasn’t it?

I had told my friends in December that I sort of felt like 2016 would be a year Outside of Time: not quite linear with the past, but neither would it be free from past influences. Meaning, just because things went a certain way in the past, that doesn’t mean they’ll go the same way now. We’ll still have to deal with them though, and it may even seem like everything from the past is coming up to be dealt with at once.

That’s exactly how 2016 has been feeling to me. Year of the Id. Everything bubbling up at once, resistant to the old ways of dealing with them.

The upside of this is that we’re getting new opportunities to resolve things that have gone unresolved for far too long. And if the old ‘tricks’ and ‘tactics’ won’t work, then we’re finally forced to resolve them in new ways. Since the old ways clearly weren’t working, this gives us the opportunity to finally move forward.

So if you are also feeling the crushing waves of chaos battering you against the shore — or, worse, the undercurrent pulling you under — take a moment to ground yourself.

Take a deep breath, then breathe it out slowly, releasing your frustration at all that arises.

Take another breath, then slowly breathe out your grief at all that has slipped away.

Breathe in again, this time opening your heart as well as your lungs, letting the breath of fresh air sustain you.

Breathe in another sustaining breath, letting the oxygen nourish your mind, opening it up to fresh perspectives.

Through breathing, create an eye within the raging storm, and let events continue to unfold for you. As they do so, practice acceptance for what’s unfolding, learning to look for the new possibilities opening up.

I have a sense that 2017 has the potential to be a truly beautiful year, filled with progress and possibilities that we hadn’t before thought possible. To get there, we’ll have to make it through 2016, learning as much as we can about how to build the space for such a beautiful year to unfold.

May you find peace and wisdom throughout whatever events are surrounding you this year, and may they bring you to a better place. Just hang onto your center, keep your eyes and mind open, and I trust you’ll make it through.

 

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Other peoples’ words and actions arise from their own past, and how they experienced it. While you can do your best to help your interactions be compassionate and respectful, you can’t control the other side of it.

It can hurt when it feels people are behaving badly toward you. Perhaps you can even do something to heal the situation. But it would be counter-productive to take on their actions as a part of yourself, letting their troubling behavior become troubles of your own.

It may help to think about why something does bother you so much, and reflect on times that have made you feel that way. Maybe there’s a pattern this feels a part of, a pattern that repeats in your life. If so, what could you do to step out of that cycle? Would you let that cycle go, so you could move on?

Above all, recognize that other peoples’ thoughts and actions remain their responsibility, not yours. Your responsibility is to build and maintain your own inner strength, within the cyclone of human experience.

May you know peace.

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Whether dawn or dusk,
Change is on the Horizon.
Greet it as it comes.

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perrault_leon_jean_basile_a_mother_with_her_sleeping_child

My little boy is generally very healthy. On the few occasions when he catches something, he is only very mildly ill, and is quickly fully better.

Not so, this week.

Yesterday he had a bit of a cold, and tonight he has coughs and sniffles and a low fever. He’s not used to being sick, but he’s weathering it well. I just pulled out the humidifier, and a diffuser with eucalyptus oil to help him breathe better and get some sleep.

This was another good evening to practice just being there, supportive but not dismayed at the challenge he’s facing nor my inability to simply cure it for him. It’s been a long, complicated day of practicing Active Zen at work, but none of that involved my little boy.

He’ll be fine, though, and I think he’s about to finally rest. I will, too.

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lbugs

Today went very quickly for me, yet didn’t seem to leave anything of itself in a meaningful way.

Looking for meaning in that, I have only this haiku by Issa:

A giant firefly:
that way, this way, that way, this –
and it passes by.
Issa

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When all the world spins
with Change the only Constant
Close your eyes. Center.

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Tomorrow is the third Monday of the new year.

For many of us, Sunday night is the inbreath before the next segment in this grand procession of Tomorrows. Reluctant, resigned or renewed, it’s time to bid another weekend farewell, and prepare to head back into that breach.

Yet it’s only the third Monday of a new year. I don’t know the average time it takes for New Year Resolutions to become forgotten, but I certainly feel that now is too soon. It’s far too early to already slip back into the old habits, the old routines, without consciously resisting falling into the worn-out grooves of behavior, of thought, of expectation.

It’s tough to climb out of those ruts, especially all at once. But even starting small is a huge start. Just one conscious effort can be enough to remind us to remain mindful of other ways we can live better.

As you find yourself preparing to face another week, another day, another moment… what would you most like to change? What do you feel likely to do or say that you would prefer to prepare to do differently? What do you subconsciously expect to feel that doesn’t have to be experienced in that way?

How could you, in one small way, experience a better week?

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