Can we really live a “stress-free” life of ease and tranquility, even in the midst of such busyness? Or is it just a pipe dream? An ideal outside the range of possibility?
It can sometimes feel like this.
Because we tend to stress about many things — from what to wear to what the neighbors think of us — and have done so for most of our lives, it’s hard to imagine anything different.
But when we question this “stressed-out” norm, and look at the thoughts that create the tension we experience in the mind and then the body, we can see where it all begins.
Tracing the stress back to the source – a thread of negative thinking – we can uproot the weeds that overrun the peaceful garden of the mind.
This is the power of meditation: Realizing that at the fundamental level, the mind is peaceful, clear, still.
Beneath the raging thoughts that propel us ever forward, there is a quietude awaiting our discovery.
As we practice dwelling in this stillness, we can see, with ever increasing accuracy, where and when the thoughts start.
Perhaps your spouse says something in the morning that triggers you. Something about the upcoming bills (even though you have it under control!), and this sets your thoughts into a flurry.
Instead of these thoughts spiraling out of control and casting a shadow over this sunny morning, the habitual reaction can be interrupted.
We can see our tendency of allowing one single comment to tip-off the long-running story of how we’re unappreciated, and how nothing we do is good enough, and how we need to control our spending…
Resting in a state of awareness brings detachment. Detaching from the story stops the stress.
And maybe there’s a conversation to have around the finances. Not a problem. It’s just another part of the day.
When we see each experience as simply the next step in our journey, there is a lightness and ease about it.
So, take a breath, take the next step, and let yourself be stress-free.
Quick Meditation Tip
With each breath, we renew our attention to the moment. A thought arises, the breath is there. Again and again. Slowly the muddiness of the scattered mind settles into clarity. And there is never any forcing necessary. We are continually allowing, releasing, letting go. Relaxation is the only action.
See if you can give your full and undivided attention to something that you’ve never given your attention to in this way. Have you ever just sat in your car on the drive to work and not attempted to distract yourself from it? Try it this week. Just focus on your breath, on the vibrant scenery laid out in front of you — how relaxed can you allow yourself to be while taking everything. And this can be applied to anything you might find dull or “everyday.” Just tune in. See what you find in the ordinary.
Quote From Adam
“Life unfolds as it pleases. Therefore, surrender is the most creative, assertive, and intelligent response we can make to any moment.”
– Dan Millman
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