Today I took a long walk. I listened to the album “Live in Buenos Aires” by Coldplay. I listen to it a lot lately and I like most of the songs. Most, not all. When one of the songs started playing that I like less, I unzipped the side pocket of my jacket and grabbed my phone. My hand and phone almost made it to freedom when I suddenly stopped. I remembered “When you are having a bad moment, know that it will pass and when you are having a good moment, know that it will pass too.”. Then I said to myself: “Exactly. Good that I remember this now. I will listen to this one now too, it will make me appreciate the next favourite song even more.”.
A couple of weeks back I stumbled across this sentence within a story of the Osho transformation deck: “Know that when you are having a bad moment it will pass, however know also that when you are having a good moment it will pass too.”. Isn’t it beautiful? Isn’t it logical too? Isn’t it absolutely obvious? Yes it is and still, I never consciously paid attention to this seemingly insignificant truth.
After I finished reading that story I decided to try and remind myself of that simple truth as often as possible. When something doesn’t turn out the way I want it to. When I am ecstatic because of whatever little thing that makes me happy, like watching a little kid running absolutely joyous through a puddle. When I am faced with a decision that makes me feel like there is no real good option. In all those moments I keep reminding myself “it will pass.”. Yes I also do it when I am ecstatic. It does something very special. It makes me experience that moment a little more conscious, more full and it makes me appreciate it so much more. Well and of course when there is a bad moment I do it too. In this case it has a different effect on me. It shows me that it is just temporary, it loosens the grip on the situation, eases the pressure. Then I am able to take a deep breath, accept it and move on. It is wonderful how these few words affect my balance.
I remember the time when I was still coding. There were those ecstatic moments when I finished a piece of work, compiled the software, launched it and checked whether my coding had the intended effects. One of my friends once compared coding with wanking the brain. For the coders among my readers, it will certainly make sense and it did for me. So when I launched the software and it had the intended effects, I basically experienced an orgasm. Yes I did, however a second later I would already find the 100 little things that I need to adapt and improve to make it perfect. Can you imagine having an orgasm and not even appreciating it to the fullest? If it were me today I’d make myself aware that this is a special moment. One that is rare enough to cherish it, to suck the last bit of juice out of it. A moment to stop, look back, appreciate whatever effort went into that accomplishment and pad my back.
Try and remember when you achieved something lately. It does not need to be a six month project, a promotion or finishing your degree. Something smaller than that. Maybe cleaning your bathroom. Maybe even smaller. Did you appreciate yourself for accomplishing it or did you take yourself for granted? It’s just something that needed to be done? Don’t take yourself for granted! Celebrate yourself, be thankful for every little thing that contributes to your well being.
Everything is temporary. The good, the bad, orgasms and life itself. The question is, how do we experience these temporary moments? Do we give in to the negative emotional spiral to willing? Do we notice the negative too much and take the positive for granted or don’t even recognise it? Do we experience life like a train that is flashing by and suddenly realise: “There are not many wagons left.”. The more conscious we live our lives and the more conscious we are about the fact that everything is temporary, the more intensive we can experience and cherish the beautiful things in life and the better we will be able to defuse the drama and tragedy of inconvenient phases of our lives.
I challenge you. Try to remind yourself the next seven days as often as possible in the good and in the bad moments of “When you are having a bad moment, know that it will pass and when you are having a good moment, know that it will pass too.”. If it has a positive impact on yourself try to go for the full 21 days to make it a habit. Best of luck!