“Warriors create their mood”. That is an age old warrior slogan that goes against so much of what you hear on a daily basis: “You make me so mad”, “He infuriates me” and “She drives me crazy” Of course, I could go on and on to people, places and things but the underlying intent or seed of all these statements is that something or someone outside myself is responsible for how I am feeling or what I am doing. It achieves the primary goal of avoiding responsibility for just about everything in our life and goes against the primary warrior concept that “warriors are responsible for their thoughts, feelings and actions.
Victor Franklin writes in his book, “Man’s Search for Meaning”, that when every freedom is taken from you (which he experienced personally in a holocaust camp), you have one freedom left and that is the freedom to choose your intent and perception of the situation which is the core of how we give meaning to our life.
1. The next time you think your life is hard or bad, pick up his book and get a different perspective – changing our perspective is a great way to detach and get a broader picture of what is going on in our life and personal battles. You can also read, “Left To Tell” by Immaculee Ilibagiza, a survivor of the Rwandan Holocaust.
2. Another technique is to change your perception or focus. Start focusing on what you have to be grateful for as opposed to what you are lacking. Your focus becomes your reality.
3. Use death as an advisor. Ask your death if the challenges you face can really destroy you or what ‘you’ they really have power over. We all play many roles and navigate many worlds. Often our biggest fears come out when roles or worlds that we are attached to fall apart. One of the most important keys to the warrior’s path is that you can let the roles or worlds fall apart (die) but you do not need to fall apart (die) with them. Our attachment to the roles we play or worlds we navigate through are often tough to disengge from unless we are very light and fluid or light and bright as we say in training, but it is a great time to reflect that new roles and new worlds await us, and contemplating or meditating on the character for chaos from the g.e.t.i.t. book can help us ‘see’ the energy of the transformations in process.
4. Ask your self, “Am I moving from fear, power or from love? What do I want to move from?” Visualize starting from each of those energies and see the feelings they lead into. What do you want to create within you and then resonate from you? Think of role models in your life and how they handled adversity and challenges. What motivated them? What motivates you?
5. Move and breath! Train, dance, run, walk! Stretch out your arms, embrace the chaos or Retreat and cocoon for awhile to reflect on who you are? Does your identity come from what you have, who you hang out with or does it come from a purpose or intent deep within you?
6. Laugh! Watch a funny movie, read a funny story, see the humour in being human. Laughter boosts your immune system and an overly serious attitude is like slow Poison.
7. Reaffirm what you value. Is it your health, your family, your integrity or the stuff around you? Affirm and reaffirm what is important to you and find out what is important to those around you.
There are many ways to create our mood and in part two I will share a bit more of the eastern and western views including insights into Psychoneuroimmunology, NLP and shinkiryuku. The important part for now is to raise your awareness that you are responsible for your thoughts, feelings and actions and to start using techniques to take charge of your intent, perceptions and behaviors.