It's what we all need to do these days ... at least once a day.
Take a deep breath.
Just humor me for a moment. As you're reading this, let's do it together ...
Inhale ... In ... In ... In ... Hold it ... Hold it ... Hold it ...
Exhale out ... slowly ... slowly ... slowly ...
Once again ...
Inhale ... In ... In ... In ... Hold it ...
Now ... Exhale out ... SLOWLY ... Relax.
Don't you feel better already? I do.
I'm sitting here in a sidechair in my bedroom staring at my king size bed and the art-covered, gray walls that are engulfing me at this late hour.
All's quiet on the homefront. In fact, the only thing I hear are crickets chirping outside. It's mid-summer and things are really heating up. I'm not just talking about the temperature either. It seems like the entire world has literally lost its mind and is embroiled in fierce conflict about nearly everything big and especially small.
The smaller it is, the more conflict it seems.
Everyone seems pissed off and if they're not pissed, they're disillusioned or dejected, rejected or injected with something to help them escape the all-too-real relentlessness of lives they didn't exactly anticipate.
And so, in order to cope, we keep going. We go and we go and we go, hoping that going will mean either we won't get hit because we're moving targets or perhaps because we believe that constant motion will keep us from actually facing the sometimes rancid reality.
But no. There it is. Right in front of us, every single day. The wanting, the yearning, the asking, the avoiding, the frustration, the fears, the deadlines ... it's all there ...
... the never ending whatever.
Whatever it is that we think we're supposed to have ... has us at one another's throats. Since we clearly choose to believe that we live in a universe of very limited resources, we're actually bringing that into being. Our perception has become reality.
And so, while the top one-percent of the world's wealthy owns more than half of the world's resources, the rest of us are left to bicker over what we believe remains. It's a joke. We're literally at one another's throats on numerous fronts ... economic, political, social, religious, you name it.
All they have to do is say ... "There's only so much to go around," and ... Viola! Like Pavlovian dogs, we're engaged in conflict over the never-ending whatever.
Do we even know for sure what we're supposed to be wanting?
Funny, because I have this theory. I believe that if we all stopped, took a deep breath and really thought for a moment, we'd realize that we don't all want the same things. Yes, we all want food, shelter and love, but after we exhale and sit alone for a few moments, like we're doing right now, we realize that maybe we should go ahead and move to the country and take up basket weaving ... OR ... maybe I should go ahead and try to save the leopards in Los Angeles ... OR ... perhaps now is the time to open up a store for vintage collectibles in Seattle.
I'd LOVE that and I HATE this. So what am I waiting for?
What I do know is that you cannot reach any realization while you're in constant battle-mode ... clawing and stabbing for whatever it is that everyone supposedly wants and feels they must annihilate anyone who gets in their way ... to get.
That only leads to the never ending whatever. Dog chasing tail.
Everyone is in this big race for whatever, but they don't know what the rules are, they don't know where the starting or finish lines are and they don't know what the prize will be ... or if there even IS a prize ... or worse yet, IF there even IS an actual race.
No wonder it's so hot ... and everyone is so unhappy.
Is there a point to this? Call me crazy, but it all seems like vanity to me. I think the trick is to wake up and realize that we've all been played like a fiddle.
Following your calling is a better gig. It's the antithesis of being in the rat race. You saw an unexpected exit on the turnpike and at the last second, something told you to quickly pull off ... which you did.
But before we can do that, we've got to STOP. Just stop for a moment ... THINK ... get a grip. You don't have to lash out every day. You don't have to suffer. You don't. Not everything has to be a fight.
Let's just take a deep breath ...
Inhale ... In ... In ... In ... Hold it ...
Now ... Exhale ... S-L-O-W-L-Y.
Release the fear. Chill.
Now ... Make different choices ... become someone new.