going inward


the past few days have been unsettling, confusing and emotional.

the tension in the air is palpable, almost too much to bare.

i’ve had a mix of emotions and  have been giving myself the space to connect with them and feel them. to look deeper as to where they are arising from.

i’ve realized that what i’m experiencing is grief

a loss of an expectation, an idealized view of how i “thought things would be”, an attachment to something that i believed existed.

denial – this isn’t happening

anger – it’s not fair

bargaining – how can i make it different, change it to the way i want it to be.

depression – it’s so painful

these are all normal and expected emotions and if we are able to be present with them and move through them we can come to a place of acceptance.

the difficulty with grief is that we often become “stuck” in one particular stage and are not able to move forward.

we so desperately want things to be the way we expect that we grasp on to our emotions and are not able to let go. we become obsessed with controlling or manipulating the outcome, of being right, that we create separateness from others.

from this separateness comes division, anger, hatred, violence and dis-ease.

this is what i have witnessed in the past days – a divisiveness, a need to be right, anger, resentment, a desperateness for things to be different than they are.


i spent the day at the ocean yesterday. watching the unpredictability of the waves, reflecting on my own inner landscape.

i went inward, connected to my own source of pain and offered up control to what is, what was and what might be.

this looking outward for answers, for control, for power, for righteousness only becomes part of the problem rather than part of the solution.

it’s in recognizing our oneness, our connectedness, that we are all much more alike than we are different, that we are all coming from a place of fear of losing our identities – our separateness and it is in this place of fear that anger, hate and division arises.

pink montana sunset

with anger comes impulsive thinking and actions.

it takes going inward, disconnecting from the “outward chatter”, connecting to that place within us wherein resides light, love, peace and a connectedness to all beings in order to move past the fear and anger.

this does not mean to be complacent and not take action or stand for the truth.

it means that when we can pause, connect to our own inner source of peace, we can be beacons of change in a loving and compassionate way, rather than through anger and the need to be right.

how to go inward…

turn off the television and unplug from social media – our perceptions of the world around us becomes skewed from television and social media. by unplugging  we filter the thoughts, words and opinions from others and can be aware of our own attachments to our thoughts and beliefs. this constant flow of information can be toxic and harmful to our emotional and physical well-being.

connect with community in a personal way – real connection to our community is so important when feeling disconnected or separate from others. although social media allows us to vent our feelings and express our opinions freely and openly, our communication changes when we are face to face with others in a truly connected way. the freedom to express on social media can often be emotionally charged and out of impulsivity. a lunch with a friend, a walk with a co-worker or an organized group get together can be a safe place to express feelings openly to another human being, yet be connected to a sense of humanness and compassion for one another.

reflect before you speak or act – take the time to sit with your own feelings, your inner landscape and observe your thoughts and feelings objectively before letting words leave your lips or before acting out in anger.

meditate or pray – recognizing that we are part of something greater and taking time to look beyond our own self can help change our perspective and see things in a broader light. meditation brings us to the present moment and helps us tune in to our thoughts and emotions. as you observe your thoughts and emotions, acknowledge them, be present with them but notice if you are prone to attaching to one idea, opinion or feeling and ask the question – why? where is this coming from? is it coming from a place of fear, a place of hurt? know that in every behavior of every human being there is a need. a need to belong, a need to feel safe, a need of some kind. recognizing the hurt and pain behind others words or actions brings a sense of compassion and understanding and can help relieve feelings of anger or resentment towards them.

spend time in nature – nature has a natural ability to soothe soul. the energy of the world around us directly impacts our nervous system. anger, agitation, resentment, these are inflammatory emotions that set off the fight/flight reaction. make the time to go to the beach, the woods, a park, some place where you can come back to your true self, where you can reset and allow your nervous system to calm down. when we are in a calmer state, we are more thoughtful about the words we speak, the actions we take and the interactions we have with others around us.


“I believe that there is a subtle magnetism in nature , which, if we unconsciously yield to it, will direct us aright” ~ Thoreau

so i leave you with a meditation prayer…

may we continue to see the goodness in the world, may we continue to love deeply, with compassion and openness. may we stay connected to our true nature – that of love. may we strengthen our minds and release fear from our hearts. may we love our children, all children, all beings. may we look each other in the eyes, see past the exterior guards of inadequacy, hurt and fear, look deep into each others souls where in each of us resides peace, love, light and oneness.

i see you, i hear you, i love you.

much love,


Categories: yoga

2 replies »

  1. Shawnee, your words and heart here for all who follow your postings bring peace just in the reading.

    How this is needed so much during these days of turmoil, disappointment, confusion, grief and bittersweet happiness – so many different responses to what just happened from so many different people.

    I am always refreshed when I read your words – they aren’t sound-bites as so many quick things are anymore, but they come from how you grew up in Montana — apart from television, social media, computers, instant gratification — living the wondrous nature you were surrounded by, drinking in the beauty you woke to every day, living a pioneering life of good solid work that built responsibility, reliability, profound internal dialogue, thoughtfulness for the needful but not the superfluous, and learning to meet challenges as part of life, sinking your teeth into life and seeing where things would go for resolution instead of not letting go.

    In closing, your words reminded me of this verse:

    “Finally, what things are true, what things are dignified, what things are righteous, what things are pure, what things are lovely, what things are well spoken of, if there is any virtue and if any praise, take account of these things…. practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you”.
    Philippians 4:8-9

    love you too, Shawnee – and I thank God for you in my life, in Tim’s and Mila’s lives, in our mutual families’ lives, and in the world….



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