Updated: Aug 24, 2022
In mindfulness balance feels like the heart of equanimity, the skill to be with whatever is in life and not be consumed by it; to retain measured decision making, even when the waves of life are raging.
Balance is an often-used term in the world of wellness prose. But what does it really mean? To me balance refers to equanimity, or the ability to be steady in the face of life's adversity. This doesn't mean not feeling, staying neutral of emotion or not experiencing pain. The balance of equanimity allows you to experience life fully (with all of its pleasantness and unpleasantness) and maintain a sense of mindfulness to help you respond to what life brings with awareness and compassion.
It is really easy when you're hurting, to get cut off from the heart. When this happens, you might lash out, say things you don't mean or miss out of the fullness of the moment because you're really quite trapped in the thoughts about whatever is happening.
But when you can drop the attention into the body, noting the sensations present, you interrupt the story of the thoughts. By noticing the sensations first, you give yourself a bit of a gap to get out of your head and attend to your heart. The moment you can go, 'oh I feel really tense here', that acknowledgement alone brings some awareness and clarity into the experience.
Then you can pause long enough to take that backward step into awareness and ask: what really matters most in this moment? You can get some perspective and make a decision for how you want to behave in that experience. Equanimity, while it sounds like a lofty goal, really is a possibility in every moment and brings a kind of balance to life that helps grow happiness and ease.
For current offerings, including a 2022 new year Mindfulness for Beginner class (a lovely holiday gift) click here.
If you'd like to consider joining a weekday morning mindfulness practice group please send me an email here with your name and days/times that would work for you. I'll be in touch with options once enough folks are ready to commit.
To practice right now check out the equanimity meditation here.