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"All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come." Chris Griscom, Spiritual Leader, Author

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Monday, August 10, 2015

Peace: No Matter What Your Activity


As I walked on the beach this morning - on the promenade - two joggers sped by me, and I overheard one of them saying to the other: "when I run, I forget about everything else and I feel so good". Obviously the next part of her comments was lost to me given the growing distance between us. However, it made me think.

I'm sure you've heard of getting in the zone and similar descriptions referring to losing yourself in the motion of the rhythm of your exercise. And I'm sure you've also heard that this sometimes happens even more strongly after you hit your second wind.

I believe this young woman that I overheard was so hyped on the content of her comment because she somehow realized that when she runs, she loses track of her ruminative thoughts; that when she runs, she somehow feels more peace than when she is not running - hence she feels good. And while all of this is true - at least for some people - I nearly turned around to run after the two joggers to let her know something of which she probably is not aware.

The mindset she achieves by running can be achieved at any point during your day - and you don't have to run to get it. So let me be clear, this post is not about whether you should do physical exercise or not, but about the fact that inner peace can be achieved at all times.

It does require exercise, however. Just not necessarily of the physical kind. Let me explain first that the reason our jogger 'forgets about everything else', in other words, her mind becomes a kind of blank, which is what makes her feel good, is because she has to focus on her running, her breath, her legs, her strength, and her endurance. All this focusing, as well as all the energy - both physical and mental - that she expends on achieving her goal: being able to run the distance she has set for herself, is what gets her into a kind of zone. It generally causes everything else to go away; i.e., her thoughts and the feelings that those thoughts cause, and hence - as said - she feels good. But what happens when she's done? When she stops running? Gradually - or even very quickly - her thoughts and the feelings associated with them come back. And so she does not feel as good. So she has come to the conclusion that it is the running which makes her feel good - which is what I overheard her say. One final point about physical exercise: of course it has the capacity to make you feel good. Of course it is good for you in general. As said, this post is not about that.

So what is the exercise I am saying you must do in order to achieve inner peace at any point during your day or your life?

You must exercise - or practice - being conscious and aware of yourself and your circumstances at all times. One very easy way to begin this, is to exercise - or practice mindfulness (see this post) - because mindfulness teaches you how to (and begins to create new neural pathways in your brain that help you to) remain present, aware, conscious, mindful. If you read that post, you will also see that feeling gratitude forms part of the exercise. You can see how it is all interconnected. And what happens when you are conscious and mindful is that you focus on the present moment as opposed to thoughts of past or future. This implies that your thoughts are not torturing you, nor are the feelings that arise with those same thoughts, causing you pain, anger, anguish, worry, stress, etc.

Being in the present moment is what our jogger is doing when she says: "when I run, I forget about everything else and I feel so good". Being in the present moment is what you can choose at will once you have exercised or practiced being conscious, aware, and mindful. Being in the present moment is what has the capacity to give you inner peace at any time. Being in the present moment is a gift you can give yourself by learning how to do it.

As always, you choose.

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Also visit my book website: www.gabriellakortsch.com where you may download excerpts or read quotations from my books. My latest book Emotional Unavailability & Neediness: Two Sides of the Same Coin is out globally on Amazon in print & Kindle. Barnes & Noble and other reputable online booksellers carry my books as well.

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