I was doing my morning reading this morning and reminded by Michael Gelb that “we all burn bagels.” What he’s referring to is that there isn’t a point of enlightenment to reach; a place where we are no longer fallible- not in our careers, our personal growth, or our relationships.
We will all lose our centre at some point, big or small, and the trick is to get back to our centre as quick as possible. Losing our centre could be self-doubt, frustration, judgement of others, disappointment, fear, anxiety, hatred; a few among so many.
No one really likes being off centre. The key to building our speed at centring ourselves is to practice with the small stuff. We practice with the less threatening moments, so that when it comes to the big stuff and we’re under stress, we can call on this skill that we’ve developed.
So, next time you’re off-centre, practice holding yourself in compassion and coming back to peace. To clarify, this doesn’t mean staying in a situation or accepting a behaviour that someone is exhibiting, but accepting the feeling that is triggered in you and deciding you want to let it go because you’d rather be back at your centre.
Tools to try centering ourselves:
Bring awareness to your physical experience in the now and stay present to the physical experience and not the story (Emotional Intelligence training)
Reframe your perspective to one that is more abundant, compassionate, accepting (The Upside of Stress – Kelly McGonigal)
Get excited about the challenge- growth is on the other side of our comfort zone (The Tools – Barry Michels and Phil Stutz)
If someone else is annoying you, rather than mentally beat the person up recall all the good things about them (The Tools – Barry Michels and Phil Stutz)
Ellen Langer shows us in Mindfulness that the perspective from which we come (playing vs. working) has a huge impact! Try it as a game for a day/ a week- and see how quickly you can regain your centre.