Episode 92: Relax & Stay Focused on Constructive Action

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“Body mind masters do not deny or repress their feelings but learn to stay physically relaxed even under stressful situations. Even when feeling angry, fearful, and sorrowful, breathe evenly and fully. Keep your body relaxed. You have much more control over your behavior than you do over your thoughts or emotions so paradoxically the best way to master your emotions is to let them be, stay relaxed, and focus on constructive action. So, accept your emotions as natural to you in the moment, without trying to fix them. Know your purpose or goal--not someone else’s. And, do whatever you need to reach that goal, whether or not your emotions or moods help or hinder you.” ~ Dan Millman from Body Mind Mastery

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Relax & Stay Focused on Constructive Action

“Body mind masters do not deny or repress their feelings but learn to stay physically relaxed even under stressful situations. Even when feeling angry, fearful, and sorrowful, breathe evenly and fully. Keep your body relaxed. You have much more control over your behavior than you do over your thoughts or emotions so paradoxically the best way to master your emotions is to let them be, stay relaxed, and focus on constructive action. So, accept your emotions as natural to you in the moment, without trying to fix them. Know your purpose or goal--not someone else’s. And, do whatever you need to reach that goal, whether or not your emotions or moods help or hinder you.” ~ Dan Millman from Body Mind Mastery

That shows up in a chapter entitled “Emotional Talent” in which Dan talks about the importance of mastering our relationship to our emotions.

He talks about the fact that: “Motivation, like all states, comes and goes, rises and falls. I certainly didn’t feel motivated all the time during my gymnastics career. But I trained six days a week, for more than four hours a day, for years, by keeping my eye on the goal. Although motivation comes and goes, you can always rely on your will.”

Dan’s a HUGE advocate of the fact that, while we don’t always feel great or have the ability to instantaneously alter our mood, we DO always have control over our behaviors. He likes to describe our emotions as kinda like clouds passing by and says that just as you can’t control the weather, you can’t control your emotions! Sometimes you’re fired up, sometimes you’re not.

As he says: “Life demands much of us, on and off the playing field. Emotional talent is the capacity to stimulate and draw upon our natural fountain of energy--to learn to blow into our own sails. We develop emotional talent not by relying on motivation all the time but by applying our will no matter how we feel.”

Amen.

This is a *really* Big Idea Dan explores more in his great book Everyday Enlightenment. Plus, he introduced me to a guy named David Reynolds who integrates Zen Buddhism ideals with Western psychotherapy in what has become one of my favorite books: Constructive Living. Check out the book and my Notes on it for more mojo. In the meantime, know this: Wherever you are, whatever you feel, remember your goal and ask yourself this question: “Now what needs to be done?” :)

(... Well, now what needs to be done? :)