Our power truly rests in how we respond to what comes to us.
It is our ability to respond quickly, effectively and mindfully that brings us the most success.
Emotion can be revealing and helpful from an awareness point of view but it can also be a blockage and a deterrent to mindfulness.
Knowing which is what is an important task.
This is to say knowing when to ignore or set aside an emotional feeling and when to respond to it is paramount for effective decision-making and fruitful interactions.
Anger and fear, and powerlessness can be the most confusing.
When one feels the need to defend, or to be defensive one is in a reactive space. When one feels powerless one may not be able to act.
Knowing when to actively defend because there is a real danger versus when to simply allow the energy/qi to go by as one does in the martial art of Aikido – allowing it to go by of its own force, to step out-of-the-way of the energy, that is the key. And with respect to powerlessness, knowing how to wait actively while being still is difficult.
The most difficult aspect of mindfulness is remaining neutral and not reacting – once you can do that allowing in compassion and evaluating all the options from a 3-d perspective is like breathing. That is response-ability, the neutrality allows for our full ability to respond to be available to us.
It takes practice.
Stress will create an increase in reactivity and a decrease in responsiveness.
There are physical stressors such as hunger, sleep deprivation, and illness. There are also emotional stressors; in example, internal expectations regarding our own behavior, or attitudes of perfectionism, or a sense of being overly responsible for others needs being met.
This latter one is often mistaken for being responsible.
It is a mistaken idea that sets up a habit reaction pattern that resembles co-dependency.
There is a difference between being responsible for and being responsible to. Responsible for takes on the energy and expectation of a co-dependent relationship and removes response-ability out of the equation. Response-ability is a responsible to action.
Responsiblity for and co-dependent relationships impede our ability to connect to our own personal power and it disengages our capacity for action from our own center.
Co-dependency is where two people come together to make one – not in the universal we are all one theory but in a reductionist philosophy – they are two halves alone and only make one together.
Healthy interactions and acting from one’s center has the boundary of responsible to each other, it is an interdependent structure not a co-dependent structure.
Interdependency is where two whole beings come together and make something that is more than one through their interdependent relationship. They maintain their connection to self while together creating something more wherein they are not reduced by their separation and they are increased by their connection.
Responsiblity to has to do with being reliable, having integrity, having boundaries, mindfulness, and balance of self and other needs and expectations; it is an increasing type of expansion through connection that is not reductive.
It is a very important component of having healthy, positively functioning relationships. It also is a way of maintaining a clear boundary of where one individual ends and another begins. Responsibility for blurs that boundary and so interferes with an individual’s availability to himself and his center.
One way to know that you are maintaining a connection to yourself and remaining in your center, so that you are able to effectively respond, is to think about how you view your ability to respond in a particular situation.
If you feel that you are powerless than it may be that you are coming from a responsibility for perspective and need to shift your perspective, notice the boundaries and get into a responsibility to paradigm.
Maintaining a stance in the world of responsibility to will help you to remain in your center and shifting into it can help you to get to neutrality so that you can respond mindfully.
This can be used like focused breathing. When you notice that you are feeling an emotion that is creating a reactivity in you, then think about these terms and focus your response-ability.
Apply the responsibility to structure to the situation and you may find your reactivity gets diffused and you can shift your perspective so that you can respond mindfully.
Responsibility to can have a beautiful effect on your blood pressure.
See you tomorrow.