Equanimity is the hallmark of spirituality. It is neither chasing nor avoiding but just being in the middle-
Equanimity, surrender, bliss when our heart(s) are graced with them? Is a pure gift. When we surrender to our soul and acknowledge that, we can’t do it, this, anymore. When we pause to feel the stream of life carrying us, taking us where we need to go, even though we have no idea where that might be? Some pretty cool “things” happen.
Equanimity (to me), is the willingness to meet life as it is, to stop fighting against myself or trying to change what is, right now. Feet up, surrender, and enjoy the weekend my friends 🙂
My imagination functions much better when I don’t have to speak to people-
The moment I finally surrendered my heart and mind to being alone, solitude became so, so sweet.
Equanimity, allowing the world to unfold before your very eyes. Steady, kind, compassionate thoughts. Your mind not grasping, reaching, or recoiling from the unpleasant words sitting just behind your pursed lips and brow. When this happens? The sweet pulse of the universe, resonates deeply.
Cultivating self-compassion softens the loneliness that often makes finding equanimity unbearable. I often have to remind myself that the pain of loneliness, ebbs and flows. Sure, my loneliness is burning deep right now. Although if I’m patient?!? This loneliness too shale pass, and the sweetness of equanimity will soon take its place.
I can hardly wait for tomorrow, it means a new life for me each and every day-
Where were we?!? Equanimity and Happiness are temporary mood state(s) that can’t be achieved by flipping an inner switch, which I like to call – Will power. The delicate aspects of equanimity and happiness that we can control, is about what we consciously choose to focus on – The way in which we shine our attention upon the good “things” in our lives.
Sadly, we are pressured and guilted into resolutions by social media and society as a whole. Buried in the sweeping negative thoughts, the sadness and depression that come with resolutions unfilled … Is being grateful. We are too distracted with our FitBit stats and marathon training plans to notice how we are goaded into being too ambitious with our delicate souls. Simply being grateful for our health, simply being, awakens us to the idea of nurturing ourselves and not mindlessly causing harm with addictive New Years resolutions.
As the temperature gradually gets colder outside, I feel fortunate to be able to shut out the cold north winds, the driving snow, grateful to take shelter in your warm hearts.
Nobody can hurt me without my permission-
The dictionary loosely defines equanimity as “mental calmness and evenness of temper, especially in a difficult situation.” Equanimity refers to a mind that is at peace even in the face of stressful and unpleasant experiences.
Many, if not all of us have experienced this dissatisfaction. The absence of peace arises from our longing for our live(s) to be different, even when we have absolutely no control over the particular circumstance(s) in question.
After sharing my numerous injuries and “circumstances” with you over the past four or so years, I have spent countless posts lamenting, nauseously, for my life to be the way it was before the surgeons incisions healed. The constant complaining found in the archives here, have made me miserable to be around. Gradually, with the help of some amazing and caring people (like you) – I came to witness that our lives have their share of both joy and suffering, and the only way I could find peace again was to stop trying to change circumstances over which I had no control of, and instead, choosing to start where I am at in this beautiful moment.
When I see that I am not just suffering, when I am not just frustration or sadness. When I notice during yoga class I’m not super flexible or the perfect manifestation of a particular pose … Equanimity helps me to calmly wait for “things” to change.
With equanimity, I try to start each day with where I am, looking around to see what life has to offer.
A modern definition of equanimity: cool. This refers to one whose mind remains stable & calm in all situations-
Raise your hand if you have ever talked to yourself, or better yet, talked to yourself in the third person during a difficult or trying time in your life. Don’t be shy now – I have two hands waving in the air if that matters?!?
Breathing, positive self talk, calmness, evenness of mind – Chill. The gentle sway of a budding birch tree, daffodils and crocuses awaking underfoot, sharing a smile with a complete stranger as you spin or run on by … All the while talking to yourself, coaching yourself, through a difficult set of experiences.
When talking to myself in the third person I normally recite something like this: “Dude, keep cool, this equanimity stuff? Is pretty damn important! Chill … Breathe … Relax the back of your throat … Eyes forward, Heart Open! Take another deep breath … Breathe … Equanimity is key … Zip it up – You got this!.”
Here I am, some random dude on the inter-webz, openly telling you that I talk to myself – all of the damn time! And who cares if you do the very same! When we are unable to walk – spin – run calmly away from a “situation“? Remember: This equanimity stuff? Is pretty damn important!
Perform all thy actions with mind concentrated on the Divine, renouncing attachment and looking upon success and failure with an equal eye. Spirituality implies equanimity-
Three laps into a grueling mid summer Twilight Criterium. Sweat, pouring from your brow, the last of your patience – exhausted – three laps ago. All the training, the race prep, the money and time spent for this brilliant moment … And who the hell does this Mustached Cinelli Straddling Punk think he is?!? This Phil Wood spinning bastard better get his ass to the back of the line!!!
Your sympathetic nervous system rages, the surge of adrenaline as you grit your teeth, our fight or flight response shifts instantly into high gear. Equanimity, our parasympathetic nervous system, is waiting back at the car, or is it? There is a way to gently pull the brakes on your fight or flight response.
My “trick” to finding equanimity during such stressful and annoying moments, is to simply keep the concept of equanimity at the front of my mind (not in the boot of the car). We all know the feeling of anger taking over our bodies, causing our minds to wander and to spin out of control. Our breathing becomes more shallow, our hearts begins to race, we feel the pressure building behind our eyes, goosebumps, a nervous twitch, the veins in our temples – pulse rapidly.
Whenever and wherever I feel my fight or flight alarm begging to sound? I stop to take a deep breath and place a mental bookmark, a bookmark that reminds me that now is the time I need to bring equanimity back to the forefront of my true-self.
Here’s the no BS deal folks: Training and running a marathon is easy, an ultra distance gravel bike ride is a mere jot around the park in comparison to consciously keeping equanimity at the forefront of our minds. Practicing and learning how to bring evenness to your mind and spirit – Equanimity – Takes a lot of work! Although, at the end of the day … Its pretty damn cool to sit back, chill, watching the world unfold before our eyes. Without lamenting about some cyclist, during some silly ride.
Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present-
Note: Over the course of the next few posts, I am going to try to write about – equanimity – Key word being try. Personally, writing and discussing equanimity is tricky and this is where I need your help! I implore you to share your thoughts and insights on this very “tricky” topic. Thank you for your help in advance!
Equanimity is not about being a doormat to others, the world. Nor is equanimity suppressing your emotions, your true spirit. So, what the hell is it?!?
Personally, as defined by yours truly – Equanimity means maintaining mental calmness, composure, an evenness of temper, during stressful situations. There are, throughout my day, certain folks or situations that trigger within me a deep-rooted sense of anger. Which, makes it rather difficult for me to be the cool dude people often think I am? What stops me from choke slamming an ignorant driver? Lashing out verbally at a yoga instructor who leaves a tired class in high plank, only to lament how tired and sore he is? Saving the best example for last … Thinking you are having a pleasant conversation with someone, only to find out they were not listening, enamored with their gadget instead.
I have found equanimity to be my most calming state of mind, especially when interacting with people who rub me the wrong way and push my “buttons“.
If you want to make it through the day with an inner sense of grace and calm, equanimity is going to take you a lot farther than hostility. Let’s play around with the wording … If you want to make it through a challenging power yoga class? Allow equanimity to guide you, instead of being a chump, a whining chump who spews hate and hostility having to do a plank for two minutes.