Something about the phrase, “Keep calm and carry on” always soothed me when I read it—whether in its original version or in the many varieties that adopted it on t-shirts or slogans for their websites. But it’s only now I’m seeing what about it always resonated with me.
I was aching for any confirmation that it was possible for me to be empowered and stable through life’s ups and downs. That even if something seemingly disastrous or disturbing happened, I could be strong and actually carry on without stopping at any and every hurdle that arose. Balanced View is the only thing that has ever given me clear instructions, lived examples and support to not just know that it was possible, but to actually embody it and live it myself.
It didn’t happen overnight. It began with simply recognizing I wanted it, that it was even possible and demonstrated by so many people in the Balanced View Community all encouraging, “You can do it, too!” I was skeptical, but bit by bit—short moment by short moment—in baby steps sometimes and in leaps others, I’d really test out that stability and see that all was well no matter the fuss I made or didn’t make about certain data. Not just imagining the words or contemplating an idea, but being willing to no longer run away—avoid, replace, mindlessly indulge—revealing a direct sense that no matter what I was experiencing, something remained unchanged by all of the appearances and sensations. Getting to know that something as my true identity is the greatest gift I could have had the chance to discover in this life.
Now I know, “I can do it.” where there was once only self-doubt and fear. Where I used to do anything to avoid speaking to people that made me uncomfortable, I see feeling uncomfortable or awkward has never killed me and it doesn’t matter if I feel it or not. Where there is the urge to make a huge deal out of something and focus on how bad it is, slowly but surely there is the willingness to keep calm and carry on with what I instinctively know I need to be doing. And that instinctive knowing is always clearer and more naturally unfolds on its own the more I rely on the Four Mainstays in daily life.
Listening to or watching talks on www.balancedview.org, www.timelessawareness.org, or their respective YouTube channels while I prepare meals or clean the house is an easy and enjoyable way for me to rely on a Mainstay. Being present on the www.bright.how Facebook page and seeing so many new people discovering the same stability and ease that I am is so supportive and inspiring. And speaking to friends in the community, I get to hear about what they are facing openly in their own lives and it gives me such motivation and assurance that I can face anything in mine.
I am grateful for a training that only ever points me back to the profound nature of being a human being, and the great opportunity and adventure that that is. Tsunamis of fear, anger, hopelessness, disgust, guilt and self-doubt scare me less and less, and feel more like rich opportunities than something to try and avoid experiencing. What remains every time I drop the descriptions and stories is an ease of being that is capable, alert, bright, and unafraid. Therein is the real calm, and ability to carry on. Thank you, Candice, Mia and incredible friends that show me what is possible and that I am not ever separate from that calm capability.