Respect Your Rhythm, Respect the Rhythm of Others

August 5, 2017

Be and let be. Live and let live. This principle, which is so simple and elemental, is not applied very often. Not all of us are aware that each of us has their own rhythm, inner music and way of seeing and feeling things. Maybe that’s why we’re forced to protect those who dare ruin our harmony, modulating our emotions to their whim.

Let’s talk, then, about rhythms. It’s a subject as delicate as it is unknown. One that we’re not always aware of. In fact, nowadays, we’re almost obsessed with promoting a rushing of our pace at almost every level. Children need to learn to read and write as soon as possible. Teenagers should act like adults. And we, as adults, don’t do much more than compare ourselves to everyone else’s rhythm and pace.

“Be yourself, every other role is taken.”
-Oscar Wilde-

We forget that in order to reach authentic inner harmony, we don’t have to use money, power or prestige as reference. Much less do we have to obsess over what we’re missing and whatever others have obtained. If we maintain this scheme in life, the only thing we will do is wander and move forward in circles. We will move to the beat of a very rough and chaotic piece of music.

Quicker, please

In the book “Alice through the looking glass”, Lewis Carroll left us a moment worthy of reflection that scientists and sociologists soon repeated in order to develop the well-known “Red queen hypothesis”. When Alice arrives in Wonderland, she is taken by the hand by the Queen in order to have a race. She must do it, because in this country, everyone runs, and they do it very very fast.

Respect your rhythm, respect the rhythm of others

People are like spinning tops twirling around the dance floor. Some go by faster, others a little more slow. Other people even stop every once in a while. Others dance at such a frenetic pace that they end up running into others. The famous saying “live and let live” is not precisely easy to put into practice. Therefore, it’s common that in certain moments we will feel overwhelmed.

Understand the rhythm of your heart, care for the cycles of Nature and respect the inner music which gives each of us strength.

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi explains in his book “The evolving self” that many people come into the psychologists office in search for a “quick” lesson in personal growth. They arrive with a level of saturation that’s so high that some search for quick responses in desperate times.

However, there are no hidden aces or magic fix-all formulas for life’s discomforts. We must understand that it is essential for processes like healing and the reconstruction of one’s self-esteem to take their time. In fact, it’s just like the very Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi explains. The greater the anxiety, the less chance of reaching that vital flow. Flow which gives us well-being and a calm balance.

We’re clear that in order to reach that much needed inner tranquility, we’re going to need time, willpower and everyday dedication. Once we’re clear that all changes imply responsibility, we will apply the following strategies:

  • Be aware of your personal “baggage”. The education that you received, extreme perfectionism, the need to please or low self-esteem. These are all clear enemies to keep in mind and which to reflect upon.
  • Analyze your habits. What do you do in your day-to-day life? What facts bring you anxiety or dissatisfaction? Why have you accepted and applied them in your life if they cause you unhappiness?
  • Find the most quality time you can. If the day is 24 hours long, you can’t dedicate 12 hours of it to other people. Nor can you occupy it in aspects that are not significant. Keep in mind that the concept of flowing can’t be found precisely in inactivity or in a state of relaxation. Flow is found in dedicating ourselves to tasks which identify us. Tasks which give us meaning, rhythm, satisfaction and, therefore, happiness. Find those things.

In conclusion, it’s necessary for everyone to head down their own path within. We must all find ourselves in our own time. In a concrete stage of their personal growth. Some will last longer understanding certain things. Thus, there is no other choice than to be patient and practice respect. Let’s learn then to let the world keep turning while we remain in our own center.