Suck it up and let it in

So about 75% of my belongings aka CDs and graphic novels are in boxes ready to be shipped out to the atlantic. The process of sorting and throwing and sorting and throwing has traditionally been an overwhelming experience that ends in me just shoving everything in boxes just to get through it.

This time with a lot of support from my significant lover, I was able to let go of a lot of things and create a lot of space I didn’t know I had.

As such, I pulled up some room on the floor to learn a little bit about breathing and the respiratory system before teacher training begins on Wednesday.

I stumbled upon Paul Grilley talking about how breathing works. Basically there are 3 states of breathing: Expanded (lungs full), Neutral (before you begin to breathe) and collapse (after exhale).

Our chests and ribcage are somewhat flexible so when our bodies do decide to breathe (neutral) the expansion causes a vacuum and air is drawn into our lungs (expanded). When our bodies decide to exhale the ribcage and all those intercostal muscles collapse gently pushing the air back out again (collapsed).

Something about this simple fact of life resonated with me. Air doesn’t force itself into your lungs. Air is drawn in just simply because you’ve created space for it.

What I took away from the breathing process are 3 life lessons:

1. Life goes where there’s space:

If you’re single and overscheduled with obligations, where’s the space for love to fit in? If you’re seeing someone you’re not totally sold on, how do you expect to have the time and space to find someone you actually like? If you’re a workaholic, where’s the space for your health?

You gotta empty out some of your shit to make space for all that good stuff to come in. You need to make space to expand you life.

2. Decisions should be made from a neutral state:

Let’s say you’ve made space and you find the good stuff inviting itself in make sure you enjoy it and keep it easy. If not so good stuff is making it’s way in, just remember that you’ve gotten rid of it before and can do it again. You need to be neutral to recognize the good shit and decide what you keep.

The good life comes when you’re a little objective with yourself an can observe from neutral (otherwise you’re only seeing what you want and might be missing an opportunity to create more space).

3. Collapse should be a temporary state:

Maybe you have space in your life but are telling yourself that nothing’s going to happen. Well you’ve shut the door on an empty room that’s totally capable of being filled.

Maybe you just need to clean out everything to reset and prepare for a fuller life when you do actually want to open up. Collapsing should be temporary — living in a collapsed state is like dying. Nothing will move out or move in — although it is necessary, it should be a pause not a full stop.

You need to create opportunities or space to let life fill in your voids. You can’t expect things to come into your life if there’s nowhere for them to exist.

Letting go of all those belongings that I acquired during my single life in Vancouver only opens up room to fill up my Toronto life in a relationship.

Going back to school for the next month only allows me to see my next career move from an observational state.

When I finally do make it to the other coast — i hope I have cleaned out all that could hold me back so I can breathe easy again and again.

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