This morning I woke up with a sense of anxiety. For no particular reason. Maybe it was an accumulation of many small items, each insignificant by its own, but piling up when put together; maybe it was simply a matter of body chemistry, a reaction to something I ate yesterday. A couple of hours later, it so happened that I was teaching a yoga class. In one of the first asanas I instructed, I have asked the participants to observe tightness and then, rather than address it, just let it be.
It occurred to me that the same applies to a host of unexplained moods we occasionally experience. Rather than muddle with it, stress about being stressed, thus causing even more stress, sometimes, the best course of action is… doing absolutely nothing. Just accepting the situation as is; let it clear up all by its own.
I am not suggesting this as a course of action for everything in life. If the cause is known, understood, and there is something that can be done about it, that is a different story. Nor am I supporting being inert when a chronic condition persists. Yet, I have observed that on more than one occasion, when I know that I don’t know and am unlikely to discover the root cause of a passing bad mood, struggle will only lead to more frustration. As Alan Watts once said, “Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone.” And I can only add that the art of life is knowing when to stir, and when to stay clear.
Learned from: an observation during a yoga class.