Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The Practice

I've got a number of things I do to cope with stress and help them keep things in focus. These activities run the gamut from eating to watching TV to biking to writing to kayaking.
In some company, these activities are called practices. They must be practiced regularly for maximum benefit. Only through regular participation can one find some sort of balance.
Because they require regular practice, some of these activities are more destructive than helpful. TV and eating provide good short term escapes. They are easy and provide immediate relief. However, over the long haul, they are ineffective and potentially destructive. Unfortunately, because they are so easy, these are the practices I turn to when things become overwhelming. These are also the ones I turn to when other outlets appear closed off and I cannot see another approach.
The practices that I find most rewarding and most helpful over the long haul require work. One is weather dependent. Kayaking is my yoga. It provides me an outlet for physical energy, challenges my balance, gives me space to think, and forces me to remember the connection between my mind and my body. Biking, to a lesser extent, also provides me the same benefits. Writing forces me to reflect on my inner life, forces me to clarify my thinking, forces me to remember that words have power, and forces me to remember that others are not mind readers.
The last few weeks have been tough for getting the maximum benefit. The weather spirits have been cranky and keeping the kayak in the garage. Work has been devouring all of my writing energy. (Writing technical documentation does not count as writing.)
I did get the bike trainer set up. However, spinning away in the basement staring at the 60's wood paneling is not ideal.
Now that the sun is shining more, perhaps the weather spirits are happy again and I can get the toys out of the garage!!!
Until then, I'll just have to keep writing....

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