This picture was taken the other day in front of my house. You can’t see it, but two feet away there's a dumpster. Both were in my environment. I just chose to focus on the flowering tree. It got me thinking how our power and our happiness lies in our focus.
We can’t control our past, our friends and family, our thoughts, our moods, our biology....etc. Instead of focusing on what we can’t control, I find it helpful to focus on what we can control. And one thing we can control is our focus. So instead of being a victim or a slave to circumstances, we can find some control, some mastery, some relief in our focus.
So instead of focusing on traffic, you can focus on music. Instead of focusing on anger from the fight you had last night with your partner, you can focus on self care, empathy for your partner, and underlying desire to keep your partnership alive. Instead of focusing on counting calories,, you can focus on the company and conversations at the dinner table. Instead of focusing on your racing heart, you can focus on slowing and deepening your breathing during a panic attack. You get the picture.
This is a skill. It takes practice. It’s not magic, it’s mindfulness.