Where there is reactivity, there is a wound

When jarred, unavoidably, by circumstances, revert at once to yourself, and don’t lose the rhythm more than you can help. You’ll have a better grasp of the harmony if you keep on going back to it. 

Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

So when such challenges come, as they always do, make it a habit to go within at once and focus as much as you can on the inner energy field of your body. This need not take long, just a few seconds. But you need to do it the moment that the challenge presents itself. Any delay will allow a conditioned mental-emotional reaction to arise and take you over. When you focus within and feel the inner body, you immediately become still and present as you are withdrawing consciousness from the mind.

Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now

Shit is going to come up. You’re going to start to feel bad at some point. Someone’s going to say something mean. An unexpected situation will happen at your work.

What do most of us do? Ruminate. Think about the asshole you wish you could’ve responded to. Ponder how you could have reacted differently. We become caught in the past. Spending time with unpleasant memories that only serve to spiral your mental state.

What you can do, what you can try in these situations is simple — whenever you are jarred, unavoidably, by circumstances, revert at once to yourself. Feel your breath. Feel the energy inside, through, and out of your body. Feel your hands move, your body’s lightness when your attention is fully focused on it.

It might not work; your mind’s been conditioned for a long, long time down the path of reactivity. But an effort is better than allowing your mind to be taken over by sinister and destructive thoughts.

Where there is reactivity, there is a wound.

Neil Strauss


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