Deep Breaths

Before I start, I need everyone to do me a favor.

Take a long deep breath, and hold it in.

Count to three.

Exhale, long and slow. Repeat that a few times. Until you are nice and relaxed.

Awesome, thank you.

I’ve been doing that all day. No, not because I think our new president is going to become a dictator and ruin all of our lives. I don’t think that. This post isn’t political in nature.

It is human.

Thats why I have been struggling to keep my calm, to breathe deep, and to relax.

I’ve heard, mostly from my father, that there was a time when people voted for who they liked, didn’t talk about it much, and didn’t try to change people’s minds. They may have disagreed with one another, but they didn’t hate. They let it go, and lived their lives.

Sounds nice.

Today, that seems like something from a fairy tale. It seems every inch of the television, internet, our neighborhoods, our places of work, our own families, are crawling with hate. Deep hate, and anger.

Yes, this wasn’t a normal election. No, the system of government hasn’t been fair.

But what a poor excuse that is for such a deep rooted lack of humanity.

We are better than this.

I don’t care about who is lying anymore. I don’t care about what he said that time, or what she said this time. I don’t care that he or she or they are so evil.

You shouldn’t either.

What we should all care about isn’t rebuilding the “status quo”. What we should do is rebuild our dignity.

Human beings, on both sides, are terrified. Not because of the leaders. But because of the masses who have filled their timelines with hate, and threats, and putdowns. With ugly racial remarks. With disgusting generalizations. With nasty claims and worse chants.

Lets all take a minute, take a look in the mirror, and make a change.

Lets rise to the occasion, America.

If you are feeling like a winner today, do so with class. And do so realizing that this country and this world is about more than just yourself and the people directly around you. Think about the ugly on your side too, and how you would feel if it was all directed at you, and the people you love. Rise to the occasion. Be kind. Reach out and be the compassionate and amazing winner you can be.

If you are feeling as though you lost today. As though your whole world is crumbing in front of you. That all of the progress you feel has been made is gone. Stop.

Rise to the occasion. Don’t scream and kick and hate. Don’t throw away what makes you all so amazing, your love. Love all people. If they agree with you are not.

We the people create this country. We create this world.

One act of kindness can change a day, can change a life, can change a home, a community, a town, a city, a state, a region, a country, a world. It all starts with you. Right this second.

Lets be people again, and not angry monsters. Lets love ALL people. Lets laugh, and cry, and live together. Lets make this country and this world the beautiful wonderful place it has always been meant to be.

We are, right now, a tiny microscopic little blip on one single planet of a never ending, forever reaching universe. We are all thrust into this weird being for however long we get and then this time ends and nobody knows what that even means. What our time here even meant.

What we do know is that all we have is each other, and a limited amount of time. Nothing else is certain. So stop this path we are barreling down. Use your time, your voice, your moments, however many you have, for GOOD.

Not hate, not exclusion.

The sun is going to keep rising, lets seize the moment. Every day.

Take a deep breath. We can do this. Together.

The difficulty of this moment

img_6601-2

The theme of this blog has become living in the moment. We all want to be our happiest selves, enjoying the little things, reducing stress, freeing our minds of clutter.

I have talked in great lengths about the Film Peaceful Warrior, and have even adapted that title to describe myself and the never ending battle to live in the present.

As it turns out, this desire, while a wonderful and progressive idea, is immensely hard to accomplish.

But that is OK.

We are all facing these challenges. Nothing is wrong with me, and nothing is wrong with you.

Remember our friend Alain de Botton? He was featured in my four post series, Self. Well as it turns out he has another thought provoking video about living in the moment, check it out before we continue.

When you are struggling to live in the moment, especially when you are thinking mainly about the past, or “the good old days”, it is important to remember that the past in what Alain calls “the present enhanced by an editing machine”.

All of those amazing memories of yours were once diluted by stress, deadlines, anger, sadness, and boredom just like the great times right here and now are. Remember this, and use it to your advantage.

Edit the present, not just the past.

Focus on what makes you happy. Take time every single day, even if it is just 60 seconds, to list off all of the positive things in your life right this moment.

It could be something as small and meaningless as having the exact change for your coffee, or filling your car with gas and the price coming to a clean even number. It is silly, but when you start to let yourself focus on and enjoy even the tiniest of life’s pleasures, the good vibes come at you like a title wave.

Alain also talks about the endless possibilities of the present, and how “theoretically, anything could happen at any moment…and that leads to an in-directed anxiety that follows us around almost every moment.” But, Alain reminds us, almost nothing catastrophic every actually happens, so we shift the anxiety to the new present, and don’t remember it when we look back at the past.

As we have discussed, We will always be anxious. But if you remember, that is not always a bad thing. As an excerpt from our now Vaulted post on Anxiety says,

“Accept that you are always going to be anxious. As de Button puts it “there is no reason for us to on top of everything be anxious that we are anxious.” Acceptance is a huge step.

Anxiousness should not leave you crippled, it should remind you that you are alive. So pursue the beautiful far away island, the perfect home, the perfect lover, for reasons other than finding calm. Otherwise you will be left disappointed.

Happiness is in the journey, not the destination. Getting to some future place is not where happiness will be found. It will be found by taking a deep breathe, accepting and embracing life, and living in the moment.”

We must learn to live with our anxieties in order to win the battle of living in the moment. And if we tackle our anxieties, maybe we can start to not only edit the past, but edit the present as well.

P.S. Breathe

Dependability

img_6559-2

This blog has meant quite lot to me. It has opened my eyes, cleared my clouded head, and given me perspective on just how lucky, and loved, I am.

The past few months I have been thinking hard as to what this website should be, and where it should go. I started writing again, and stopped again, because honestly what I was writing just did not feel right. Where is the lane for P.S. Breathe to exist in now that I am graduated college?

Last night, it hit me.

It was time to hit the refresh button, to clear up the clutter.

Much like we, as peaceful warriors, do every so often, we need to refocus on the present, respect the past, and guide our own journeys whole hardheartedly in the moment.

So I created the vault.

The Vault, is a new page on P.S. Breathe, where I locked up all of our old posts. It can be found in the upper right hand corner of this website.

Gone from this blog page is everything I had ever written for you all and for myself. This is a turning point in our journey, and it was time to take out the trash, as an older post was once titled.

I have opened the vault to show a handful of old posts. The ones I most like to reread to refocus my mind. The others will come out of the vault every now and then as well, to be looked at again, in a new light.

Now, we start anew. P.S. Breathe will have one new feature post a week (Mondays), right here on this page to help all of us within our community to focus on the here and now, to embrace our journey.

The next three Monday’s will take a look at or old friend, Alaine de Botton, and some of his theories.

I very much look forward to writing to you all again very soon.

Until then, live in the moment,

And don’t forget to breathe.