This morning I woke up pissed off. I had discussed why I might be feeling angry with BGC last night, and we came to the conclusion that I had no rational reason to be feisty, other than having just biked through a 32 degree dust storm which was very exciting, yet challenging with no windscreen wipers to protect my eyes.
And I realised, as I often do, that my former moody self would have approached my random anger in a very different manner.
I would have found a way to make it BGC’s fault,
or I would have bitched about a friend who was pissing me off.
What I do instead these days is announce if I’m feeling irrationally angry or upset so BGC knows that it’s nothing to do with him, and he comes on my team to help me try work it out or get rid of it, rather than taking it personally.
It does take a pretty chilled dude to not take female emotions personally; most dudes have inevitably had many experiences of female emotions leading to hissy fits and stomping and erratic behaviour from previous girlfriends. I know because I used to be one of them.
I didn’t know how to manage my emotions, good luck to anyone who was in my line of sight.
However, every dude I’ve dated since changing my life with mindfulness has easily fit into this new paradigm of the brutally-honest relationship, they love it, they love knowing where they stand and can finally relax knowing that they no longer have to walk on egg shells around me when my emotions are playing up.
Now, when I’m feeling irritable, I tell BGC “I’m feeling randomly angry.” Or I say “my ego is really firing up today.” (I’m talking about the ego in the way Eckhart Tolle defines it, not in terms of arrogance. Then sometimes we have a chat about it, and often my emotions fade after that, because I acknowledge them rather than suppressing them.
But last night my irritableness didn’t go away.
I woke up feeling neutral, and then my mind reminded me that I was annoyed last night, so it brought the emotion back for re-processing. Such a helpful dude, my mind Neville.
But I decided not to take it seriously this morning. I tried to feel the sensation that felt like anger (using a technique I teach my Bloody Good Life clients), and I watched my mind as he cycled through all sorts of possible options for why I could be angry. But the fact was, nothing had triggered me, nothing is wrong in my life today, so I had no reason to let my mind dwell on angry thoughts.
I went to yoga, felt annoyed at my weak quads throughout the class (god I hate utkatasana!), and then biked home, only for it to suddenly pour like crazy on me.
As the crazy-ass Melbourne weather did an angry watery dance around me,
I suddenly felt elated. My anger was totally gone.
Just like the Melbourne weather, our emotions come and go. No need to take them too seriously. One day you have a 32 degree dust storm, the next day 17 degrees and sunny, then 5 minutes later, hail! (That seriously happened yesterday and today. Melbourne “summer” weather is the definition of bipolar).To live a Bloody Good Life we need to become the observing self Click To Tweet
– the self that can non-judgmentally observe our emotions and thoughts as they come and go.
The sky is the ultimate analogy of the observing self that we all have in us. Our thoughts are the clouds, sometimes heavy and dense, sometimes light and floaty, sometimes moving fast, sometimes moving slow.
Our emotions are the wind, rain, sun and storms. Click To TweetThe sky remains unaffected by the weather passing through it. Infact, I bet the sky is highly entertained as it watches the dramatic weather that comes and goes. The sky knows that no matter what happens with the weather, it will be all good in the hood.
This is what a bloody good life looks like.
There will always be rain, crazy-ass hail and dust-storms, and there will always be sun and fluffy white clouds. If we can learn to sit back and watch it all happen inside us without jumping in there and trying to change the weather, we can be a zen as the Dalai Lama, no matter what happens.
Because a tornado observed from afar is an amazing, spectacular thing. But if we’re all caught up inside the tornado, it’s a nightmare.
The tornado I’m referring to is your mind.
Want to learn how to handle that particular jandal with me and a group of legends?