Wrangling Society-Induced Anxiety

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In order to stay in the game here, I am going to try the 10 minutes of writing to keep the words flowing. I never really set a theme for this writing session. Pretty much just “Lundie’s Life” which is everything and nothing in the way of writing topics.

I don’t want to just sit and bitch about the current state of politics, though that’s pretty high on the list of topics bouncing around in my head. Hard to browse any social media without running into rants and more divisive commentary. I can’t read too much more without being ready to unfriend everyone. Although I have to say the “Bad Lip Reading” of the first debate did amuse me a great deal.

There’s not much newsworthy going on right now. Just living my life as moment to moment as I can. It’s a really interesting process to react to anxiety by letting go of thought. Returning to my breath, taking a moment to locate my hands from the inside (sit still for a moment and “feel” for where your hands are without moving them”) It’s a really nice method to just clear the mental palette and have the upper hand at discriminating thoughts – and watching feelings come and go. Inner stillness is “the bomb” as the kids say. Even now as I write, a few pauses restores mental sanity and the words free up.

I think that’s why I’m having such a hard time watching ANY news/social media lately. Everything just pushes / drives / drills so fast without reflection and response. No real thought. Everyone just talking over one another, trying to win with the perfect timing of the zinger. I watched about 3 minutes of the debate and couldn’t watch it anymore. It really started to feel like some kind of cage match, with moderators throwing meat scraps to get the blood flowing. Blech.

Time to start spending time outside watching the trees instead.

Love and peace,
Lundie

Day 10 of #Write31Days2016
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Meh.

bummed_out_gumball_by_irock312Skipped yesterday’s writing. Ooops!

Gosh, I don’t know how I can lose so many pairs of earbuds. It makes listening to my audiobook very difficult. Today I’m still listening to “The Journey Into Yourself” by Eckhart Tolle. It’s hitting the spot.

Writing today is not coming easily, but here I am. The temps have dropped and the house was freezing this morning. First day of turning on the heat. Fall is really here. I haven’t really accepted that it’s October yet. Lately, I have been so busy with work that I don’t even know what DAY it is. So much for “present moment” eh?

So much mental block.

Need a topic. I would pick up current events and comment on those, but honestly, Trump being (undeniably) revealed as a misogynistic pig will only make me more angry. It’s been clear from early on that he’s reprehensible, but those who support him do so without a clear reason that I do not understand. News like this won’t change their minds. It’s very hard for me to not devolve into “Us” and “Them” mentality when it comes to Trump. I don’t give a shit what political party he’s part of. He’s a toxic human.

I think I need a nap.

Day 8 of #Write31Days2016
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Evening Presence

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Living in the moment. I’m actively pursuing this process. I’m amazed at how much of my life is geared to NOT living in this moment.

I find that at work I dig in and am so focused that I am not so much “alert” as I am driven. I have a goal/a purpose/a task and I push-push-push until it’s time to break out of my mental hyper-focus and regroup. I don’t know whether or not I would consider my work mode as living in the moment or not. I am very focused on whatever is in front of me, so perhaps? But most times when I stop my work mode, I have sort of a required adjustment time back to “reality”. It’s like I have to down-shift my thinking and it can be tangibly difficult. Lots of conscious breathing and relaxing back into my body.

But the area where I have the room for improvement is in my down time. My evenings are spent either as a spectator of someone else’s story (TV, movies, etc), or a constant stream of random input scrolling through various social media. Neither of these things keep me “present”. Writing, on the other hand, or sketching, both have a very “present” or aware/alert focus. Connecting with another person also is much better when you’re both in the now, just enjoying each other’s presence and conversation.

Both TV and social media are numbing tools for me. They’re usually paired with eating or drinking (post dinner). I think it’s time to find some new evening relaxation activities. Something that isn’t necessarily *active*, but doesn’t take me out of the here and now.

Would love to hear ideas!

Love and peace,
Lundie

Day 6 of #Write31Days2016
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Understanding Trump

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I’m super tired of politics. I’m super tired of watching Trump say something, then turn around and say “I never said that.” I cannot understand how this man got to be a presidential candidate. His behavior is something I’d reprimand my 11 year old for doing.

I read an article in Scientific American about a week ago that really resounded with me in answering the question of “Why is he the way he is?” There are a lot of answers out there – he’s a narcissist, he is greedy for power. But this one seems to cover all of the above. It explains the changing of his “beliefs” every time he turns around. It explains his language, and helps explain his motivations.

“In my estimation, Trump is driven by one thing and one thing only: the search for glory. Everything stems from this one simple fact, and everything falls into place in a predicable fashion once we fully understand the operation of this fundamentally human drive.”
Donald Trump’s Real Ambition, by Scott Barry Kaufman, July 24, 2016 on The Scientific American blog.

It really went a long way in explaining why Trump is doing what he’s doing, but it does nothing to explain his supporters. I have yet to see someone support him who isn’t angry and/or fearful.

I’m really trying to “stay in the now” about all this, but I have to say, listening to Trump speak (which isn’t hard, he’s everywhere) makes me truly fearful for the future of our country. I am not a huge Hillary fan, but I believe she’s capable of preventing World War 3. Trump? Not so much.

In the meantime, I am going to continue living my life the best way I know how, and vote with my son in mind on November 8.

Love and Peace,
Lundie

Day 5 of #Write31Days2016
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Wandering into the Wonderful

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I had an inspiring conversation this morning at the Y after swimming. Not 24 hours after I post I don’t like to chit chat in the morning. It wasn’t chit chat actually. One of the regulars is this delightful elderly Asian woman. She hums and sings hymns in the shower room. She’s actually very good and, I have to say, it adds to the meditative tone of the morning.

This morning, however, she stopped and asked me what the meaning of the words were in a book title she saw recently. At first I misunderstood, but over the next 5 or 10 minutes, we worked through the language barrier and had a very interesting time exploring the meaning of the words “wander” vs. “wonder“.

She said “thank you” several times for the language lesson, but honestly, that was the best conversation I’d had with a near-stranger in a long time. Not only did it challenge my communication skills in a new way, it has brought back an old interest I had in maybe volunteering as a adult education tutor or even an ESL tutor in some fashion. That would be kind of cool. Really cool.

Love and peace,
Lundie

Day 4 of #Write31Days2016
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Water

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I love swimming. The meditative qualities are the best part. That whoosh of kicking off the wall under water, seeing just how far I can go before I come up for the air and the first strokes. The rhythm of it. But not too monotonous. Alternating strokes each lap keeps it different enough. Helps me keep track.

lapswimonlysignI am even beginning to love the early morning part. Well, making that first move to put a leg out of bed and onto the floor is super duper hard, but after that it’s not that bad. I’ve learned the night-before-prep is critical. After that it’s just movements.

I’m not a fan of early morning chit-chat. There are some who clot on the stairs down to the locker room having 5am conversations, but I am not one of them. I pleasantly greet the other regulars, but that’s it. Nod at the lifeguard and then start my meditation.

It’s a beautiful thing.

Love and peace,
Lundie

Day 3 of #Write31Days2016
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Know My(Thy)self

This is Lundie’s life, yeah? So, who is Lundie?

The best way I’ve found lately to figure out who I am, is to stay as best as I can in the current moment. Staying in the current moment means letting go of history (past Lundie), and not letting myself “borrow worry” from tomorrow (future Lundie).

This process requires a lot of attention. Attention to the here and now. It’s super hard for someone like me who lives a large portion of her life inside her head. This is my unattended brain:

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So what do I do? Well, I’ve spent time lately listening to Eckhart Tolle. It started with his book (for me it was the audiobook), “The Power of Now“. Then I moved on to Pema Chödrön’s audiobook, “Coming Closer to Ourselves: Making Everything the Path of Awakening“.

So far, it’s been really exciting. Sort of like I’ve decided to just “wing it”, but with a little more groundedness and trust that I’ll figure it out one way or another. As I get more experienced in catching myself mentally wandering into the past, future, or other “not here” place, and re-centering, the more I am loving life. Right now is the only place I can do anything anyway, why would I want to escape it? As I said before, being mentally “not here” is the true “MO” of “FOMO”

So, that’s it for today. I’m getting to know my today self, and she’s pretty cool.

Love and peace,
Lundie

Day 2 of #Write31Days2016
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Write 31 Days 2016

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Welcome.

You have likely landed here due to a Mr. Linky or other link/share for the 2016 Write 31 Days Post.

To see all my Write 31 Days posts, scroll down.

To read more about the Write 31 Days site, go to Write31Days.com. To see other participants, click HERE.

Love and peace,
Lundie


Day 1: Settling In
Day 2: Know My(Thy)self
Day 3: Water
Day 4: Wandering into the Wonderful
Day 5: Understanding Trump
Day 6: Evening Presence
Day 7: No-show
Day 8: Meh
Day 9: No-show
Day 10: Wrangling Society-Induced Anxiety
Day 11: Float-y
Day 12: the Space Within
Day 13: My Brain Hurts
Day 14: No-show
Day 15: No Complaints
Day 16: Sunday Night Brain Noise
Day 17: No-show
Day 18: No-show
Day 19: No-show
Day 20: Silence
Day 21: Rest
Day 22: No-show
Day 23: No-show
Day 24: Now
Day 25: Sore
Day 26: Happiness is…
Day 27: No-show
Day 28: No-show
Day 29: No-show
Day 30: No-show
Day 31: No-show

Settling In

just_beLately I have been finding joy in the art of “settling in” in my own head, in my own skin, in my own space. It’s an idea that I’ve been toying with, dancing around the edges of for a while now. It’s the practice of relaxing into myself and letting that be “enough”. And it’s only by regular practice that I feel like I understand. Now all I can think is, “Try it, you’ll like it!”

This is “Lundie’s Life” and never more have I realized I have a complete 100% right to it. That’s one of the damages that can be done with scripture. The idea that I am “not my own, I was bought at a price” may be intended to bring comfort and a sense of belonging, but for me, what it did was remove my right simply be ME. In my drive to be “right” with God, I abandoned my rightful place in my own body, and my own head.

I am amazed at how life seems to flow better when you stop fighting it. It’s not about good or bad, or right or wrong. Right now, for me it’s about observing. Engaging with what’s in front of me. If I spend so much time reviewing things that already happened, or stressing over all the things that could happen, I completely miss the NOW that just IS. That’s how time flies. That is the true “MO” of “FOMO”.

Love and peace.
Lundie

PS – Check out this post by JJ. I like her.

Criticism

A photo posted by @byron_katie_quotes on