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Turning Focus Inward

I can’t wait for spring and summer. Springs means graduation. Spring means freedom. Summer means exploration. Self-exploration. Nature exploration. Exploration of the people and world around me, both near and far. I really don’t think I could be much more jazzed about it. I also couldn’t be much more scared. Spring means the end of using school as an excuse not to have a real job. Spring means the onset of student loan payments and more societal pressure to find a ‘career’. Summer is my opportunity to decompress and think about what I truly want to do. Not with the entire rest of my life. That would be a silly and illogical choice to attempt to make right now. I can’t predict tomorrow. Hell, I can’t even predict the next hour. But what I can predict is my commitment to myself, to my health and to my happiness.

Wow, I’ve been writing a lot about health and happiness lately. It really interests me right now. It interests me how much we neglect our basic physiological needs in pursuit of higher achievements. It interests me how we became so ingrained to always want and need to produce. It interests me to explore avenues that allow me to shuck that enculturation enough to find what I truly need at my absolute core. It isn’t easy. And I can certainly be considered no more than an inexperienced novice in the arena. But the question is not about who is winning the race. The question is about who is taking the time to understand their inner drive throughout the entirety of that race. Truly knowing yourself takes practice and dedication, just like any other area in which so many of us strive to become masters. Shouldn’t mastering yourself be your first priority?

Even athletes, who are held up as the pinnacle of our society, often lack the commitment to themselves that brings true happiness. It could be a large reason that we have such a high percentage of professional athletes with multiple legal charges and convictions on their record. We often act out when we feel uncomfortable with something within. This is a lesson that many of us learned from a young age if we were every bullied or picked on. “So and so is only lashing out at you because he feels uncomfortable with himself.” But, what do we turn around and do to that kid who we perceive as having an inner dissonance? We punish. We use the eye for an eye technique, regardless of the fact that we know exactly where that will end up leaving us.

Gandhi told us so elegantly. It will only end with a world full of blind fools, stumbling over, around, and on top of each other. I don’t know about you but I enjoy my vision. I enjoy colors. But I often marvel at the skills and uplifting spirit of those who have lost their sight when I come into contact with them. I can’t even begin to imagine what the world looks like to them. It’s fascinating! Sensory perceptions are possibly the most important components that contribute directly to our survival and enjoyment of life. Funny that we so often allow them to be overridden by our overdeveloped and domineering brains. Hmmm….

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