Relaxation and Sunshine

Photo credit: Flickr user abbyladybug

“Relaxation” and “sunshine.” These are my keywords for 2011.

“Relaxation,” as in, relax into yourself…remain in your authentic, relaxed state. Remember to breathe. Stretch. Breathe more.

“Sunshine,” as in, seek it out. Find the positive people. Choose contentment.

In Yoga and the Path of the Urban Mystic (a book I just finished reading), Darren Main suggests that choosing contentment is a revolutionary act. In most of his movies, Cameron Crowe suggests a very similar thing – just replace “contentment” with “optimism.” Lloyd Dobler: the ultimate dissident.

When I met Jordan, I considered myself a pessimist. (I was 17.) I said, “I just think that maybe you can’t ever really know another person.” A friend had broken my heart; overnight, his character seemed to change, filling the shell of Friend with a completely unfamiliar Stranger.

“Or maybe,” Jordan said, “it’s just that sometimes, we can’t keep up with the changes in other people.”

(Jordan is wise. He yells “ball sack!” at his computer when he’s frustrated with a technical problem…but he’s wise.)

I’m no pessimist these days, but no optimist, either…I’m a yogi. I try to avoid predictions about outcomes. Predictions are dangerously close to attachments, and I’ve read enough pop Buddhism to know that attachment leads to suffering. Just be in the moment, man. Ride the wave.

I’m riding the wave this year. I’m choosing contentment in the moment, at the same time as I’m weighing some big life decisions, like where to live. This is a delicate balancing act: planning for the future, while also letting go of expectations, and allowing life to unfold in its own lifey way.

Relaxation. Sunshine. I wanted a third word for 2011 — there’s a certain symmetry in threes — but it never came to me.

Maybe: “moments.”

What words represent your desired state of mind this year? What moments represent your 2011 life so far?


2 thoughts on “Relaxation and Sunshine

  1. A great deal of "there but for the grace of God go I" + being grateful for what there is. I think that the end of winter also helps. Greatly. 🙂 But if it comes to one word, it's grace. Grace in accepting what there is, enjoying what you have fully and without guilt, but graciously and quietly so you're not rubbing it in someone else's nose.


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