Or any instance of road rage.
Or treating another person like an object for your own selfish needs.
Or defending your turf, your teeny-tiny turf.
Or defending your point of view with red-faced bluster over, say, the meaning of the last scene in Inception.
A fourteen-year-0ld moment (with all due respect to fourteen-year-olds out there) is perhaps an instance when emotions get so distorted that they override and obscure any sense of reality, any sense of true connection.
How to avoid such a moment from becoming a month or a year?
Catch the moment intense emotion arises.
Witness the emotion. Call it what it is.
If the matter doesn’t merit the motion of emotion, deflate the balloon in your brain: exhale, long and smooth and loud.
Smile. Even if it’s fake at first, the musculature in the mouth and eyes might help reverse the physiology of anger or fear or irritation or rage or frustration.
Distinguish non-attachment from detachment. Emotional detachment translates to emotional repression, numbness, apathy. Emotional non-attachment involves being emotionally engaged but witnessing and then letting go of any outcome of a situation.
All of this reflection arose this evening because the burly driver of a big red pickup kept taunting me and my little Toyota on the way home. His truck even had, apparently, some device that let his truck expel puffs of black exhaust in my car’s face. And, oh, did the fourteen-year-old in me raise its ugly head (and, almost, middle finger). It took about ten minutes or more for me to practice the above and try to kill the guy with kindness and wide-wheeled smile as he glared at me at a red light. A few minutes of genuine non-attachment was a highlight.
The male mind remains a mystery.
So what about you? Any such moments today? Or were you fortunate to have a calmer series of highlights today? Regardless, share your top three memorable moments from your Monday – and let us know where you’re writing from.
See you in the woods,
The Three Highlights Guy