It’s Earth day I wonder if we can plant more trees than people for a change?-
Big friggin’ deal! Its Earth Day! Awesome! It’s also the day after Monday! Who cares about Earth Day anyways …
Today is Earth Day, which means it’s time for our annual Earth Day social media blitz, lamenting about the benefits of “green living“. Whatever that may be. Drive a Prius, plant a tree, hug a butterfly, recycle coconut water bottles, think about how fitly you are, buy an Earth-friendly yoga mat, read green-themed blogs, chew on some kale, grow your own while you are at it, and lets not forget to change the old energy sapping – ozone layer killing light-bulbs, for “energy – efficient” ones, that will pay off their $$$ price twenty years down the road.
Don’t worry! Tomorrow is Wednesday, not Earth Day, and it’s back to business as usual.
Earth Day was once dedicated to organizing mass action to radically change public policy, largely inspired by the movement that brought an end to the American War in Vietnam. Today, “Earth Day” hype is almost entirely based on individual responsibility, and the “look at me I’m kissing a malnourished toad and planting heirloom tomatoes” crowd.
My question for Earth Day advocate(s) is this: Why should I – some poor dude – bear the brunt of environmental responsibility for Earth Day? Is it because it’s easier for companies, friends, media and governments to brow beat and shame me into action?
Is it too much to ask, to put in a little extra green work the rest of the year? To create a culture of sustainability, to live in a world devoted everyday to the well-being of the Earth? Even if it means taking a little time away from the inter-webz? Most of us don’t mind turning off the lights for an hour— lighting a candle to read, playing a board game, and some other low-wattage activities. Like I don’t know – Hopping off the treadmill, playing tag, yoga and Cycling outdoors?!?
Don’t get me wrong – Earth Day is pretty damn cool! Thank goodness we can still drink organic wine on Earth Day or is that frowned upon as well? Who cares – Cheers!
A personal revolution is the consequence of confronting self – as is -
Over the years, I have slowly arrived at the conclusion, that who I was, turned out to be largely influenced by whom I associated with. Quick example: Have you ever noticed how you feel and behave one way with your family on Thanksgiving and differently with your friends on a rowdy Friday night, and another way with your running buddies early one morning and super flexible yogi’s during a rigorous class?
Not that who we want to be is of no consequence during our daily lives. Although when it’s at odds with what another person’s presence pushes us to be … Let’s pause for a moment – Personal story time. I get caught up in the moment, depending on whom I am surrounded by and the given setting. Who I truly want to be often loses out, or is muted by their presence. How often, for example, do you want to be loving, kind and gentle towards yourself during yoga class, only to be left feeling cold and bitter by the lack of gratitude and energy in the room?
The idea I’m trying to highlight and one I feel is quite important, is that all of us, let me say this again – All of Us – exert far more of an influence on the people around us, more than we perhaps realize. This may not be our conscious intention, but by who we are ourselves.
When we allow our true selves to shine through, no matter the setting, the intention or who we are surrounded by? Let’s just say I feel its immensely important to sit up and take notice of the profound effect this may have on our lives …
A storyteller makes up things to help other people; a liar makes up things to help himself-
I have wondered about “something” for some time now. That our intention(s) and the effect of our action(s), don’t necessarily line up. In the coming posts, and with your thoughtful help and support along the way. I would like to set out exploring this gap in a variety of different contexts and disciplines – Internal, External and Relational.
I hope to awaken greater personal liberation for many of you reading this morning.
What is clear to me this morning, is that shifting our focus from the effect of our actions to their intention? Is a good place to start …
Resolve to be tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant with the weak and wrong. Sometime in your life, you will have been all of these-
I would like to wrap the week up by not talking about “No“ … But rather two extremely powerful words, two words that transcend our overuse of “no.”
Showing empathy does not drain or deplete our true spirit, our friends. Nor does empathy weaken the strongest of family ties. Empathy empowers us with a special sense of togetherness, a powerful sense of being connected. Empathy, the ability to powerfully understand another person, is invaluable, in every relationship of our lives.
It feels good, doesn’t it? Satisfying and empowering, being on the receiving end of empathy. As parents, friends, yoga instructor(s), pilates even. A training partner at 5am on a rainy Saturday morning … Take a moment to pause and reflect on the people you have worked the hardest for in your life. The people who connect and powerfully understand – You.
I feel motivated, when I feel understood. How about you?!?
There are an infinite number of reasons to say no. Instead, try to focus on one good reason to say yes-
This weeks post will focus entirely on two harmless letters: N and O … And why it’s extremely difficult to put them forth in good faith, in a manner that honors and respects our true spirit. A little context is in order before we begin. This past Saturday my plans went sideways, really quick! My team fell apart at the last-minute for a gravel ride over in Iowa, which we had planned back in January over a few soul warming adult beverages. No biggie, such is the ebb and flow of life when you try to get five dudes together at once, add in work and kids?!? You know how it goes, anyways … A new yoga studio opened up not too long ago in West Omaha that I was curious about trying out. This is where I failed to say “no” for the first time on such a lovely Saturday morning. What do you think when you read “Hot Yoga?” For whatever reason, and maybe what my spirit needed at the time, was a hot vinyasa flow. I could rant about Bikram yoga, but I won’t – not here. I had hot yoga firmly planted in my stubborn mind, until class started that is.
Saying “no” to anyone, about anything, is easily the most challenging part of our lives. Do you like being told no? Do you take comfort in telling someone, maybe yourself, “no?”. We want to avoid the discomfort and the consequences that might come our way for being fully “exposed” in our unwillingness (my stubbornness). Many of us continually strive to be caring and available, and we often find it strenuous to face a situation in which, for whatever reason, we don’t find the willingness, the courage or ability to say “yes” to what is being asked of us.
If we are able to keep our attention focused on attending to what matters most, and keep coming back to that intention, this beautiful “thing” called life may surprise each and every one of us. We begin to hear the needs of our True Spirit more clearly.
When saying no eludes me, however much I am committed to “whatever” … Rather than closing my heart in order to say “No,” which is what I often do, I consciously choose to open my heart wider, in order to actually feel the pain of saying “no” and bear witness to its effect – To honor my true self, to tell the full truth, and to remain present to hear it.