Bigger than this

I often live my life in a bubble, bumping around into other people’s bubble’s. My world is saturday morning pancakes and the smell of coffee breath tainted with last nights one too many beers and cigarettes from the commuter next to me, little dump trucks and dirt boxes, big city offices and the hum of white collar workers with low morale, toddlers crying because underwear must be worn and there hasn’t been time to practice liking the sound of the vacuum yet, hands in flour water and yeast yielding warm bread and hot garbage stuck to my shoe.

Maybe you are like me in that you float around in your life, mostly seeing things from your bubble, feeling the grind of your job more than the person next to you, your back pain hurts a little more than your neighbors, the rain even makes you a bit more wet than everyone else? And we all bump into one another, holding our breath and hoping the bubbles don’t break. Comforted by illusion of safety and warmth of the blanket of our self deception.

And then, if you are lucky, there are moments when your bubble bumps into someone else’s and you are breathing the same air, having to look at things from the space of their bubble, and a glimpse of real life tip toes in.

Life is bigger than this, we are bigger than this. My bubble had the opportunity to collide with so many at once that my reality exploded in an instant. Nothing makes this reality more clear than moments of birth and the process of death.

The danger is, that the moment trails away, the grief lessens it grip, the joy of birth turns into sleepless nights and spit up and the bubble slowly starts to reform. I am a better person, better off than I have been before for this moment that has lasted longer than the others. Suffering is universal, and it is experienced in degrees, if we can see suffering as a collective ailment, share in the pain, we can share in the glory, in the breath of life, it gets a little easier. There is so much more space and air in a bigger bubble, more room for freedom and happiness and for sharing in the unavoidable pain of life.

It takes practice, you may not be ready to burst your bubble completely, maybe start with joining one or two other bubbles, share in their pain, see life from their hearts, and slowly expand. The key is to be aware as often as possible as to where you are in relation to the rest of us – and make a choice, don’t float in your bubble obliviously.

Stolen with love from Eddie Vedder’s “Hard Sun” and words changed for the purposes of my intentions:

When I walk beside them
I am a better person
When I look to leave them
I always stagger
Once I built an ivory tower
so i could worship from above
when I climb back down to be set free
they took me in again

there’s a big
a big hard sun
beating on the the big people
in a big hard world

There’s a big hard love
that is bigger than us
in this big love world

Go on, go do it.

Opening

One of the things that happens when you open yourself to life just as it is…you may have a constant urge to run the other way, or at least that is what happens to me.  Let me be clear here, I don’t have this all figured out, it is a journey, I try to do it more often rather than less.  In the same way I have a dailish meditation practice.  I attempt to have more moments in the day where I am aware that I am making a choice, whether it is a thought or action and from there try to make the choice that is the most open and real, ishishish…see what I mean?  I ask myself why I am doing what I am doing – what is the feeling behind it? Why I am resisting my boss or colleague or train seat mate or partner?  I may go right on resisting, but I try to do it consciously.  

Case in point.  In my job, the job that in which one of the the things I am tasked with is determining how we can best lead, coach and shape our people to be the best most authentic leaders possible, I also have to role model the behaviors.  Which is damn hard sometimes.  We recently had a very senior role open, one which I declined to interview for (which is a whole other story for a later date).  The final internal candidate is a person I worked with for 12 months during my stint in Amsterdam.  The “person” triggers me to no end.  Very political, extremely hierarchical, not very nice to their team…you get the picture.  The person was given the job, and in an indirect way it is part of my job to help set them up for success.  I found myself so annoyed that they got the job that I spent a good hour with a colleague complaining about all that ails our company and why they would make such a poor choice and how people are going to hate this person, blah blah, complain complain.  I found myself somewhere in my rant realizing I WANTED this to happen!  That I need to be right and I was deep down wanting him to fail.  Pause here.  Yes, this was one of those oh shit moments where I realized that I had a choice to make.  I could acknowledge the feeling, which was embarrassing to begin with, I mean what Director of Leadership secretly hopes for a new leader to fail??  I am gonna go with the “human one” as my answer, that is who.  So in the moment I acknowledged my feeling (to my wife which was way safer) and then made the choice to do what I could do to be wrong.  I decided that as much as the person triggers me, it doesn’t do me, the person, the people around the person, or the Company any good for me to be right.  

So, I am on the journey of trying to set the person up for success.  Even if it is painful.  I look at the him and see him as a person who wants to be happy, healthy, and free just like me.  Ugh.  

My dailish meditation practice and study of mindfulness is what helps me here.  I owe it to that practice that I am cultivating my own self awareness in order to be a more authentic and better person in this world.  If it weren’t for that ability to pause, I would have gone right on waiting for an wanting the person to fail.  

Don’t be afraid to be human but do try to be as honest with yourself as you can.  You may surprise yourself.

On now to your week…be healthy, happy and free my friends.Image

  The pic is just meant to make you smile 🙂

Promiscuous Intelligence

Andrew Fitzgerald's blog

Blog - Capes Coaching

Uncovering the idiocyncracies of life and living each moment, one at a time

The Daily Post

The Art and Craft of Blogging

allaboutmanners

Just another WordPress.com site

Bucket List Publications

Indulge- Travel, Adventure, & New Experiences

𝒥𝒶𝓂𝑒𝓈 𝒥 𝒩𝑒𝑒𝒹

𝒫𝓇𝑜𝒻𝑒𝓈𝓈𝒾𝑜𝓃𝒶𝓁 𝒢𝑜𝓁𝒻𝑒𝓇 & 𝑀𝒾𝓃𝒹 𝒞𝑜𝒶𝒸𝒽

MindfulVision

My tribute to life with all its curiosities and miracles

Playing Your Hand Right

Showing America how to Live

Gotta Find a Home

Conversations with Street People

floreakeats

Food Writing. Nonsense. Home of The Food A--hole's Dilemma and other delicacies

cancer killing recipe

Just another WordPress.com site

A Window Of Wisdom

Whispers from spirit heard with your heart

Eleventh Stack

A books, movies, and more blog from the staff at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh - Main.

smilecalm

Life through mindful media