Between the Bumps

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I remember being on a flight several years ago that was extremely turbulent and bumpy. I’ve been on my share of bumpy flights, especially over the Pacific ocean, but this one was scarier than usual...one of those flights that feels like a roller coaster & feels like it is going down.  I started to feel pretty anxious.   To keep from panicking, I found myself trying to pay attention to all the times when it wasn’t bumpy.   I started to count the seconds between each bump & be mindful of how good/peaceful it was in those 5 second respites, then maybe 10 seconds, then 12 seconds, & after awhile, maybe over a minute.   I did this for quite awhile....eventually the bumps got less frequent & then it was smooth sailing after a few hours.  

I’ve been reminding myself of this. It seems like a lot of things right now are really bumpy for a lot of people I know & in the world, & I am feeling a series of several bumps in my own life.   It’s natural to focus on the bumps & how overwhelming they are, but it’s helpful for me to be mindful of the times when it’s not that way, acknowledging moments of peace, neutrality, or even joy, even if only in 5 second intervals.   I don’t know if you need this today, but if it is helpful, pay attention to the respites, no matter how small.   They can anchor you for the next bumps ahead.

AnxietyGeorgeann Brown