Are you running from your problems?
I had one of those crazy days where you are faced with a nasty surprise and horrified by how greedy, inconsiderate, and mean some people can be.
First, I remembered to breath. Which made me cry a little, but then helped me to take deeper breaths and get re-grounded.
Then, I tried to work on the situation for a little bit.
And then… I went for a run.
And I realized as I ran that I was running to AVOID solving the problem. To avoid the icky feelings that resulted and the annoyance, frustration, hurt, anger, and sorrow I felt as a result.
How often do we run from our problems?
In my case I was literally running away to keep my mind busy and avoid thinking about and feeling unpleasant things.
But we as people ignore stuff all the time. Can we said avoiders much? When things make us uncomfortable, surprise us, disappoint us, shock us, we like to push them under the metaphoric rug and pretend they aren’t there in order to avoid dealing with the situation and the unpleasant emotions that come up as a result.
Running away does not help us. Running is not the way to handle problems. Running is not an act of love to ourselves or to those impacted by us and our lives and situations.
So I stopped running.
I got my butt into a yoga class because, for me, I knew that would help me to calm my breath, find mental clarity, reconnect to the present moment, and truly feel the emotions stirring in my body–no matter how uncomfortable they may be. Yes, it meant that I cried in yoga, I felt SUPER SUPER ANGRY in yoga, I was frustrated, hurt, confused, annoyed, and had more trouble balancing than you would imagine. And at one point I wanted to giggle hysterically.
But the fact of the matter is, the yoga practice helped me reconnect to the now and address the gunk that surfaced due to my unpleasant surprise. To leave feeling calmer, better able to address the situation (which is nowhere near as dire when you look at it from a distance), and to also feel compassion and sympathy for the cause.
In order to #PassLove, we have to love ourselves. That does not mean we will feel happy and everything will always go the way we want it to. Life has surprises, life presents setbacks, life is full of many kinds of people (not all of whom practice kindness), and we have to take them as they come. We have to let ourselves fully feel and understand a situation (even if it makes you mad, sad, hurt, whatever) in order to solve it, to understand it, and to deal with it in a happy, logical, and, yes, loving matter.
We choose how to let situations affect us. I wrote on facebook “when things surprise you or get you down, the important thing is to remember to breathe, take them as they come, and to still practice compassion.” We can choose to be the bigger person. We can choose to see the bigger picture. We can choose to still treat others with kindness. (In fact, I prayed that the person on the other end of my annoying bump may discover compassion and sensitivity.)
I am allowing my situation to help me better devote myself to really embodying #PassLove, to better help others, and to practice what I preach.
What do you do when bad things happen? Do you try to run away from them? Or do you use them as an opportunity to #PassLove while simultaneously learning, growing, and increasing your capacity for compassion? If we all chose the latter route, the world would certainly be a better place!