Tuesday, April 22, 2008

grace in giving up

I was feeling a bit emotionally hungover today after my blowout yesterday, and I had to really consider what happened and how to avoid that kind of meltdown in the future. Because really, it doesn't feel good to let of steam like that: I look like an overgrown and crazed 3-year old, stuff gets destroyed, and whatever sets off the rage in the first place isn't fixed. And it's kind of funny because like a real hangover, I feel guilt for my failings-- wasting my time, taxing my husband, breaking pots. Also, my face was all puffy today from all the crying, and I'm very vain so that made me feel bad too.

I recognize that most of my life I've let anger be my default setting when I come up against challenges. I used to think that my anger made me powerful, but I was wrong. My anger just makes me feel helpless, and for a kicker it also shows the world all of my weaknesses.

At times I can be an enlightened creature, and and I've learned to see that anger coming and set my focus on what can be done to improve the situation, not on what is pissing me off. Staying calm, and concentrating on breathing in oxygen in a measured way. The more I practice this exercise, the easier it is to let things go, secure in the knowledge that whatever uncomfortable feeling I'm having is likely just temporary.

There is so much more grace in just giving up sometimes. And it is so much harder when you have a big, gigantic, hard head like mine.

To finish off this episode, a word from Free Will Astrology:
Is there really such a thing as free will, or are our destinies shaped by forces beyond our control? Here's one way to think about that question: Maybe some people actually have more free will than others. Not because they have more money. (Many rich folks are under the spell of their instincts, after all.) Not because they have a high-status position. (A boss may have power over others but little power over himself.) Rather, those with a lot of free will have earned that privilege by taking strong measures to dissolve the conditioning they absorbed while growing up. They've acted on the advice of psychologist Carl Jung: "Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate." As you enter the phase of your astrological cycle when more free will is yours for the taking, Leo, meditate on these thoughts.