Wednesday, November 9, 2016

When I Find Myself

In Times Of Trouble…
Times ahead are not going to be smooth sailing.

No matter what your circumstances or politics, all kinds of changes are coming, some big, some small, some that will feel good to you and some that will feel bad.
No matter who you are, keeping your balance, physically, emotionally, financially, or spiritually, is not going to be easy. And losing your balance is not going to be painless.
Balance is not just an idea, it is a physical state.
Balancing is not still. (I prefer to call it balancing, since using balance as a noun can be inaccurate and misleading.) It is a state of dynamic tension that requires listening and constant adjustment to changes, external as well as internal.
It requires us to be present in our bodies so that we can sense these changes as they are happening…and it requires a kind of physical fitness, so that we can adjust and make the corrections that will continue to steer us in the direction of balance. This is true of emotional, as well as physical or psychological balance. It doesn’t require us to be Olympic athletes…but it does require us to be athletes of a sort.
We have to be ready to be firm. We have to be ready to be soft.
We have to be ready to retreat. We have to be ready to advance.
We have to be ready to yield. We have to be ready to push back.
We have to be ready to listen. We have to be ready to speak.
And all of these things happen in our bodies. Whatever else they are, all these abilities are physical too.
If we really want better balancing, we have to attend to our bodies because that’s where balancing happens.
Improving physical balance is not enough to bring balance to the rest of life…but it is a great start because it requires many of the things that the other kinds of balancing require and there is direct feedback regarding progress.
If you really want to improve your balancing generally, it’s a really good idea to improve your balance physically. Doing that requires good posture and alignment. It requires basic muscular strength and well as the ability to relax those muscles when needed. And it requires the kind of sensitive listening and adjusting that brings good posture and appropriate use of muscular strength to life.
Taking care of yourself and your loved ones is never a bad idea.
So take care of your own balance.
Take care of your own health.
As much as you can.
Whether you have health coverage or not. Do what you can for yourself.
That’s never a bad idea.
If you can’t, you can’t. But if you can, do.
Invest in your own balancing abilities and invest in your ability to take care of yourself.
This doesn’t mean you can’t ask for or receive help. Of course you can. But do what you can for yourself too.
You can still fight the good fight, whatever that means to you.
But if you want to keep balancing while you do it…get less injured…be less stressed…feel less collapsed…less hyperactive…not as agitated…attending to your physical balance can really help. It can be the foundation for a balanced diet, a balanced mind, a balanced heart, and a balanced life. 
I do it through T’ai-Chi practice, but there are many many other ways of improving physical balance. I urge you to find one that feels like a good fit.
So…the day after a particularly contentious and difficult election, I will do what I do nearly every day: I will train.
I will practice T’ai-Chi. I will teach T’ai-Chi. I will do some work with weights. I will do pushups and pull-ups. I will ride my bike on a short but challenging uphill road loop. I will eat well. I will rest well. And later, I will play at being seaweed. I will mix and match random movements from the various forms I know. I will dance and explore what my body can do and feel. I will practice striking and striking principles. And when it’s time to sleep, I will give my body to its rest as gracefully as I am able.
And along the way, I will connect with my friends and loved ones as I find them.
I might even sing if the spirit moves me.
I will invest in my own balancing. 
And get as ready as I can for the next wave…

No comments:

Post a Comment