I just wrapped up the first retreat of the 2023 Adventure Mastermind and it was EPIC. Wild fun adventures and people having BIG breakthroughs. I’m looking forward to spending the next few months with this group. (You can totally get on the waitlist for the next cohort NOW, by the way. Link in the resources!)
Anyway, I planned a lovely day of downtime after the retreat, but my flight got changed and I ended up frantically packing so I could leave early that day.
So, this week’s topic will be a replay of perhaps one of the shortest episodes I will ever do. But it packs a punch because it calls us ALL – no matter how painful our childhood or how difficult life has been for us before – to step back into having sovereignty in our lives, and in how we impact others. May it be of benefit!
Here’s an example many of us have experienced: you’re on a plane and all of a sudden the plane drops into an air pocket and gets a little wobbly. And a few people gasp and the bell dings and they ask everyone to fasten their seatbelts…
After fastening up, what do you do? Personally, I look to the flight attendant. Are they freaking out? If so, you bet I would be too! If they are calmly flipping through a magazine, I start to let go of my anxiety and try to relax.
A good flight attendant is not the thermometer, letting the scene’s temperature and vibe lead to some reactionary behavior. A good flight attendant is acting like a thermostat – with the ability to impact the people around them.
Just like them, you can be the emotional thermostat in a given scenario, able to impact the entire room.
When I worked in the ER and a new trauma case came in, or when I would come into a birth full of tension and anxiety, or even when I was guiding and there was a rock fall or an avalanche was set off, it was literally my job to keep cool. I discovered it was one of my superpowers – to remain calm when shit was hitting the fan.
In those situations, I often heard, “When you walked into the room, I felt a shift.” Which is good, because that it what I intended to do – and the thing is, you do it, too. You impact a room when you walk in – but the degree to which you do it is up to you.
Sure, sometimes I had to fake that calm and control because I knew that if I lost it, then everyone else would, too. But it began to come naturally to me, more and more. You can do this too.
Our capacity for having an impact on others is well-known in Buddhism (and Western psychology) and it’s one of the reasons we practice, right? It’s why we meditate or do yoga or listen to podcasts. We’re learning to free our minds from getting hooked by emotions that are more like thermometers… more reactionary.
In addition to lessening our own suffering, it’s so we can be a touch of calm in the center of this storm of life. Or be the touch of positivity, hope, humor, or love.
We all have that capacity to influence those around us in this way. Not just in emergencies, but in day-to-day life.
At the end of my yoga practice, I like to dedicate, “May this practice not just benefit me, but all I come into contact with.” When we can make a dedication like this, we own that we impact the energy of the space we are in.
So as you move about your day today, try to notice how you’re showing up. Are you entering into challenging situations and allowing them to impact you such that you react to them? Are you just wishing it didn’t make you feel that way… wishing for that change?
Or do you intentionally set the tone and be the change you want to experience?
As we cultivate our wisdom, compassion, and ability to create more time in that pause between perceiving a situation and responding to it, we will become more and more skillful at it.
And if you’re faltering with that practice these days, hang in there! That’s why we practice. We are all connected. How we show up has an impact in the world.
It matters. You matter. A LOT.
In this Episode you will learn:
// The difference between being a “thermometer” vs a “thermostat”
// Why we need to shift from reacting to a situation to creating it intentionally
// How this shows up in how we take a leadership role in our own lives
// One dedication you can practice to start owning your energy + impact
// Episode 44: The Power of the Pause
// If you’re new to the squad, grab the Rebel Buddhist Toolkit I created at RebelBuddhist.com. It has all you need to start creating a life of more freedom, adventure, and purpose. You’ll also get access to the Rebel Buddhist private group, and tune in every Wednesday as I go live with new inspiration and topics.
// Want something more self-paced with access to weekly group support and getting coached by yours truly? Check out Freedom School – the community for ALL things related to freedom, inside and out. Learn more at JoinFreedomSchool.com. I can’t wait to see you there!
// Want to join me for the next cohort of the Adventure Mastermind? Visit AdventureMastermind.com to get on the waitlist to be the first to hear about the next dates and locations. If you’ve already done the mastermind, stay tuned for a special alumni retreat. We’ll pick up right where we left off and dive even deeper!