Here are where the original posts from P.S. Breathe can be found. This “vault” currently shows a select few blog posts from the original blog, and will rotate out the other vaulted post over time.
A light stretch, a little jumping and shaking. I tighten my sneakers, tuck in my shirt, and tie up my shorts. A few drinks of water – a deep, slow breath. And I’m off.
Deeper into the trails, step by step, in rhythm. My breathing is light, also rhythmic. In my nose, out my mouth, in my nose, and out my mouth. The leaves crunch under me, twigs breaking, cold air hitting my face.
All of my assignments and deadlines, stresses, fights, complaints; they all crowd my mind. So I move faster through the woods; In rhythm, breathing. My anxieties are nipping at my toes, my embarrassing moments, my sadness, my doubt. They all are about to catch me, and never let go. So faster and faster I move. Winding through the trails, further and further, pushing myself harder.
Fear. I am afraid. I know we all are, but that doesn’t help me. What am I doing with my life? Am I headed the right direction? Am I making the right choices? I am afraid. So I push my limits further. As far as they’ll go. Everything is a blur. Everything but the step just ahead. My only focus is on my breathing, so I don’t pass out. Faster and faster and faster. It hurts; but I cannot stop. I must keep going. I must keep pushing.
I am clear. My mind is free as a lay in the grass, out of the woods, and off the trail. I am catching my breath. Feet up on a fence. Slowing my heartbeat. There is nothing on my mind. Nothing but my breathing. In my nose, and out my mouth. In deep, and out. In, and out. Just breathing.
I have run. I am free.
In the Moment
All we have is this moment. Right here, right now. The future isn’t promised. The past is just a memory. This very second is all you truly have. I will always try to honor this by giving you something worth reading.
You may have read some of what becoming a Peaceful Warrior has done for me in my last post, some of the motto’s I am practicing each and every day. One of them, “This moment is the only thing that matters”, is so important to remember, for so many reasons.
While scrolling through the internet, I came across a post titled “what are you waiting for?”. If you have the time, it is a good, inspirational read.
The premise of the article is relevant to what I am talking about today. Thinking ahead, planning for things to get better eventually takes you out of the moment. Future you is only going to be okay if present you lays the ground work for happiness now.
We have happiness right in front of us. Look up at the sky and marvel at the size of the universe, and how lucky you are to be a part of it. Put on your feel good music, eat your favorite little cheat snack, watch a good movie, the list goes on.
You might feel as if some of these things are not living in the moment, not seizing the day. You may feel like spending the afternoon sitting around with Netflix and ice cream and not working or training or busting your ass is a waste of the moment. Truth is, it’s your moment. Take the things that make you happy, especially the little ones, and run with them. The small things are what keep us sane.
That terrible day you had yesterday? It is gone. Done. Leave it in the past. That job you are going to get one day? That person you are going to build the courage to talk to some day? Go get it.
And if you really are not quite ready, hold on to that hope. Hope is good. But don’t wait on that to bring you happiness. Live now, embrace every moment of your journey, big or small, this moment is where the magic is.
Feel it, embrace it, live it.
And Breathe. Just breathe.
I Call Myself a Peaceful Warrior
Committing to mental health is cause for celebration. I am a firm believer that a clear and peaceful mind is the most important asset towards a happy life.
Mental health is a sort of domino effect. You clear your mind, you cleanse your body, and you feed your soul. You can be the poster child of physical health, but with a clouded mind, you are never going to reach your peak happiness.
But today I want to celebrate something more specific than just mental health. I want to celebrate something simple.
Today I am celebrating a movie.
This movie doesn’t have any awards attached to it, it didn’t make much money or get great reviews. Outwardly, there really is nothing special about it. But this movie is the staple of my path towards a clear and healthy mind.
Peaceful Warrior, a film based off a novel by Dan Millman (which was a best seller), is about a gifted gymnast who faces a devastating injury. He meets a mysterious man who opens his eyes to a vision of strength, focus, and understanding.
The reason I like the movie is for its delivery. It is a story, a drama. The novel is more of a self help, which is great, but I prefer watching the tale of someones journey, rather than read a guide for what I should start doing.
This film gave me my motto and life mantra’s. Here they are…
“The journey is what brings us happiness, not the destination.”
“Where are you? Here. What time is it? Now. What are you? This moment.”
“This moment is the only thing that matters.”
“A warrior is not about perfection, or victory, or invulnerability. He’s about absolute vulnerability. That’s the only true courage.”
“Life has just three rules? Paradox, humor, and change. Paradox… Life is a mystery. Don’t waste time trying to figure it out. Humor… Keep a sense of humor, especially about yourself. It is a strength beyond all measure. Change… Know that nothing stays the same.”
“I call myself a Peaceful Warrior… because the battles we fight are on the inside.”
Clearly, this film has no shortage of cliche, inspirational and motivational quotes. But what I am celebrating is the fact that they work for me.
This movie is soul food. It is a cleansing experience, an awakening. I believe it serves a very important role and purpose, and I highly recommend it.
The point I am trying to make here, is that your inspiration can come from anywhere; your motivation and positivity can come from anywhere; your mental health practices can literally come from anywhere. A cheesy movie, a book, a quote, a song, a painting. Where it comes from doesn’t matter. What does matter, is that you invest fully into what brings you peace and clarity and happiness. You practice it, and become it.
For me, mental health is all about embracing the journey. All we have in life is time. We have no idea when our time runs out. Embrace everyday and live in the moment, take chances, and be vulnerable.
And when life get complicated, because it always does, always remember to breathe.
As I scroll through the internet, I see an endless array of guides, maps, and “how to’s”. They cover just about every topic you could think of. I narrow my search to mental health. Same story. This is odd to me, reading step by step guides to happiness, exact plans towards becoming a better you. This is odd to me, because if it was really that simple, we would all be happy, all the time.
We are not of course, because life is hard. There is no step by step guide for the stresses and the grind of living in this world.
That is why I am here.
This is not going to be a place to go and follow a plan. I am not going to teach you about any secrets to mental health and self improvement. There are none. But what we can have here, and what would make this publication special; is a community, a togetherness, and a place to go for comfort and support. We can learn together, teach each other, and navigate through our minds and the complexities of life as a team every step of the way.
When you come to my site, you are going to be reading about deep thoughts and ideas, and how I, and others, are navigating through stresses and deadlines. Some posts will be about music, television, or movies, and how they can tie into your mental health. We will talk exercise and diet, happiness and sadness, weather, sports. Honestly we could talk about anything, There is no limit to what we can discuss because everything we do, every single day, has an effect on us mentally.
That is what brought me here. A little over a year ago, I had gotten to a place in life where I was always stressed, always in a rush, and often sad. After trying to blame it on one thing after another, I realized that everything I do has its effect, good or bad. So I started actively finding what effects everything has on me. What tends to be on TV when I’m in a good mood, what do I tend to be eating when I am aggravated. Suddenly, the world started to slow down. Am I out of the woods? Always happy and never stressed? Of course not. But I am light years away from where I was, and I am continuing to learn and evolve everyday, becoming a better and more mentally strong me.
I want to hear your stories. I want to hear how you cope with life, what you love and enjoy, what makes you sad. I want to build a community of people who are committed to getting out of their minds, and enjoying the journey.
Thank you so much for reading, and I am looking forward to growing, learning, and helping us all self improve.