I think that you should consider yourself lucky if you can step outside when you’re having a bad work day and re-group yourself into a place of zen. Like me today. I was a mixture of frustration, blinked-back tears, and deflation. I just wanted to go home and bury my head in the sand — think of the saddest little ostrich in the world mixed with Eeyore — but what good would that do? Not very much; Eeyore is always losing his tail and is a rain cloud to be around. If tv has taught me anything, it’s that that isn’t very fun! So I decided to do the next thing that instinctively called to me… I went outside and found a patch of grass with a tree on it and I began to concentrate on my breath.
First breath in, first breath out. Second breath in, second breath out. First breath in, first breath out. And so it goes… my heart rate starts to slow… first breath in, first breath out. A calm starts to form and suddenly the beauty and wonder of my surroundings begins to pop out. Oh hello there Mr. Tree… so wise and calm. A thick trunk that supports your branches full of luscious greens. I wonder if you have any blossoms up in there? Hmmmm… no, but there’s a bumble bee, flying around in figure 8’s. Where ya buzzing to? Bumble bees always look like they drink and fly. Ah, no blossoms but there’s a crow. Perched on a branch and walking sideways… skid-addling to the left and the right. Looking for a comfier spot? Maybe just doing a little dance. I love how ruffled the feathers on top of some crows’ heads are. Oh there ya go… caw-caw-caw. Helllllooooooo to you too! Caw. Second breath in, second breath out. I snap out of this connection to my surroundings, but now my thoughts are more calm.
No more need to count the breaths, but just feel them instead. In and out. Feel the calm. Feel, instead of succumbing to the chatter of your mind. Thoughts are just the ego talking. Separation from your thoughts — detached awareness of the thoughts in your head — are a step in tangling the ego up in a lasso of rationality. Now I’m calm again. Still feel a little shitty, but now it’s a different type of shitty. Internal locus of control. We create our own realities because we are the lens that filters events and surroundings. I’m not actually mad at others – I’m disappointed in myself for not holding a firmer stance and for not articulating my thoughts more clearly… as well as for not working harder in the month before I went away. I see my part in this. The anger is no longer displaced; it has been converted into a call for action in terms of things that I can control. And I see my next steps. All is within our reach – as long as we live and learn; meditate, reflect, and act accordingly… and be grounded in Mother Earth.