A Little More ‘Zen’ in Times of Crisis
Zen | meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary is… “Relaxed and not worrying about things that you cannot change”
This is a timely reminder for the current times we are in. There is so much going on in the media about the current world crisis, raising vulnerability as well as fear, anger despair, an endless stream of the negative state of the world.
We are taking in so much noise and information every day. There is a overabundance of information coming at us from the time we get up in the morning whether you reach for your phone, read the news, turn on the television or listen to the radio on the way to work. Then there are emails, social media, phone or zoom calls, conversations and interactions with others.
We are constantly being bombarded with sounds, words, road signs and billboards, not to mention our own thoughts that are constantly playing in our head.
*“Our hearts and minds are sometimes so full of noise we can’t always hear the call of life and love, or connect with the happiness that surrounds us. To hear that call and respond to it, we need silence.”
What we consume each day – what we eat, read, hear, speak, sense and think effects how we are.
In Buddhism, the Four Nutriments refer to the four kinds of food that every person consumes every day. They are edible food; sense impressions; volition and both individual and collective consciousness. All these foods can be healthy and nourishing or unhealthy and toxic.
Mindfulness allows us to choose the foods or nutriments that keep us safe and elevate our health and wellbeing.
Here’s some ways to create ‘A Little More Zen’
- Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables to feel energised, healthy and nourished. Stay away from junk foods, they only make you tired, moody and you may feel guilty.
- Spend time in nature, walk along the beach, sit by a river, listen to beautiful music, watch an uplifting movie. Turn off violent or bad movies and TV shows and negative news reports.
- Connect with your inner voice and deepest desires and getting clear on your purpose will motivate you and bring you joy. Stop worrying about how many likes or followers you have on social media, being more successful or making more money than your co-worker or friend, getting a new sports car. It’s pointless if you’re not happy.
- Consciously choose what and who you surround yourself with to find more space and joy. Be compassionate with yourself and others. If you’re surrounded by people who are judgemental or angry or you’re living in a noisy neighbourhood…. find a caring community, friends that support who you are and what you do, move to a happy neighbourhood.
Try adding these into your daily mindful practices. Remember to relax and not worry about the things you cannot change.
*Ref: Silence, Thich Nhat Hanh