I’ve been having tension in the back of my neck for about a week now. At first, I blamed it on a lack of movement, but I’ve gotten my 10,000 steps in.
I’ve spent time stretching, too, but for some reason, I keep coming back.
As I tried to rule out what could be happening, the lack of yoga (Studio is closed), or maybe not drinking enough water, it dawned on me that it’s obvious we’re living in times of high tension.
Could this tension translate into tension in the body?
While western medicine rarely considers this case, it almost seems obvious to say that we are constantly absorbing information in our environment.
And today, that information is full of tensions.
Our information flow gives us so many tensions, so many pieces from shattered glasses and our minds believe it’s up to us to put it all together.
It’s not unnatural for the mind to want to fix things; in fact, that’s what it’s primary job is to do.
If you give it a question, it wants to answer. It wants to fill in gaps.
Here’s a crucial lesson about the mind:
If you give it open space, it will try and fill it with worry.
This worry is primal – if you see a shadow, you assume it’s bad.
This assumption of danger is there to protect you, and sometimes it does.
But the tensions of today’s political, financial, global, information environment are giant problems that currently do not have an easy resolution.
And so your mind is subconsciously trying to fit all of the pieces together.
Your mind wants an easy resolution.
This simplicity is why people can be more apt to believe in conspiracies. They are easier answers to accept than more complex and ongoing explanations.
The problem with simply laying down in the pool of all this tension – absorbing all of the news, considering all of the problems…
Is it will keep you stuck in a loop.
It will keep you from acting. You’ll get into a circular habit of outrage.
The media is created to give us tension, but not to resolve it.
This keeps our minds stuck in a loop without resolution, and worse, without action
Any satisfaction quickly becomes a record on repeat, re-stirring the tension.
And so it's our job to relieve tension – but not through simple conspiracies, and not by staying stuck in these same loops.
But instead by giving our minds something more productive.
By dropping our ideologies, which attempt to frame problems as extremes.
By focusing our efforts on what is near and dear.
I’m not sure if my tension will resolve if I quit seeking it’s a resolution “out there” and instead focus it “in here,” but in writing this, I’ve mostly forgotten about that problem.
And in attempting to take action, without the intent of manipulation, without need for an ends but instead simply to give this piece of writing my attention and care…
That is the resolution I’m looking for.
Further references, links, and questions for your self-study.
- Article: Big Moods, Little Moods "In other words, a big mood is not when I’m sad because you’re sad and you’re my friend. A big mood is when, for example, we’re both reacting with sadness to some headline news we hear at roughly the same time"