The story of life and the EAC?
What can Finding Nemo and riding the East Australian Current teach us about ourselves…
For those Pixar fans among us that enjoy watching the Finding Nemo and Finding Dory movies, what can they teach us about life? Many of us have struggled with finding personal success whether that being fame, fortune, respect or self-fulfillment. I too am not immune from these struggles and would like to share a personal story and connect it with riding the EAC.
For years I was a practicing emergency physician, working in some of the busiest trauma centers in the country. Being called an “adrenaline junkie” was a term of endearment, for the excitement of saving lives and facing a new and ever complex challenge was self-fulfilling. But this self-fulfilling journey was eroding me from within, each new patient became less new, each new challenge became less challenging and my mind was in search for the next opportunity that would keep me self-fulfilled and happy.
I entered into the world of business and obtained an MBA thinking that this newly minted knowledge will open the doors to new challenges that would drive self-fulfillment. Unfortunately for me, I have ridden a circular journey where my search for happiness from the outside world left my inside world full of pessimism and unhappy.
I was fortunate to come across a colleague who has walked the same path as I but 20 years prior and was willing to share his wisdom with me. This colleague has become a great friend and I now call him my yogi; he first opened my eyes to the true meaning of yoga. It is through the act of yoga as professed by Krishna in the Bagwhad Gita that I discovered the path to self-fulfillment.
Sell-fulfillment is a journey that begins from within… It is not found but nurtured.
The practice of yoga as described in the Gita has helped me reverse that vicious cycle of looking for happiness outwards and concentrated on my personal happiness. It takes combination of mindfulness practice to calm the brain and motivation to continue on said practice. A calm brain has greater focus and greater ability to be resilient to the daily challenges of life; I started to respond, rather than react to stress and unexpected circumstances. From there I slowly realized that happiness comes from within; be proud of yourself, count your blessings and effuse kindness to others.
The EAC and your new life
The EAC is well know in the Finding Nemo series of movies, popularized by the chill sea turtles that seem to have everything in perspective. The current is brisk and acts like a superhighway that propels Nemo and friends towards their ultimate destination, Sydney Harbor. Entering and departing the EAC one must face turbulence. It is only once you enter the EAC does the journey become calm and predictable.
That East Australian Current is a microcosm of our lives. When we are stressed and looking for what we think is happiness, turbulence ensues. But only when we practice mindfulness and calm the mind can the turbulence dissipate and allow for calmer waters to reappear.
When life throws a series of curveballs, stress will intensify. When stress rises, turbulence rises, and a vicious cycle can commence. For those who practice mindfulness, they are well equipped to handle these curveballs of life and minimize the turbulence of life; respond, not react…
Mindfulness brings calm, calm brings inner happiness
There are many tools available to support your mindfulness practice but I am a fan of Insight Timer who offers a wide variety of guided and unguided mediations. The key to living turbulence-free life is to (metaphorically) enter the EAC through a commitment to becoming mindful and calm.
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