Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin
Showing posts with label Tai Chi. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tai Chi. Show all posts

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Rituals and Targets


©Brigitta Huegel

Dear You, 
thank you for your kind wishes! I am myself again, and happy about that.
The good thing about growing older is, that by now one knows oneself a little bit better - and I do not only know my reactions (and the time they will approximately take to heal - and if I forget I can browse through my more than 150 diaries) but also some measures I can take (or: continue) to find my balance again.
One of these wonderful stabilising tools are rituals.
"It's vital to establish some rituals - automatic but decisive patterns of behavior - at the beginning of the creative process, when you are most at peril of turning back, chickening out, giving up, or going the wrong way",
writes Twyla Tharp in her interesting book "The Creative Habit".
Every morning I light a little candle on my table, and have tiny fresh flowers for the whee little buddha, and I thank the Tao for being alive. A little bowl on the windowsill reminds me to see my day as a beggar's-bowl: wide open, but without knowing (or expecting) what the day will put into it. (And to clear my mind of too many thoughts and concepts, so that - as in the Zen story - "new tea can be filled in that cup without making it overflow by too much tea that's already in it.")

©Brigitta Huegel

                                 I once told you that I do not only eat a rich breakfast, every day, come what may (porridge with wheatgerm on it and blueberries, a boiled egg every day, half a grapefruit and a little bowl of cottage cheese and a mug of strong tea - yes, with sugar - and then a big French bowl of hot milk with an espresso in it) - but that I also greet the day - summer, winter, every day: I step on our balcony (which is large and protected by the glass front behind me and 2 walls beside me, and the floor of the balcony above, and I sip my tea, greet Berlin's skyline silently and then look at my flowers, and feed the birds (in summer only with water). I write in my diary, and then I do my version (more correct: my dear friend Stephen Russell's) version of very quick Tai Chi (that takes about 18 minutes) - and than I hop into the bathroom.
Where I remain a while, because an exact Amy Winehouse eyeliner takes it's time :-)
Then I'm ready for the day.
Yes - I am a lark,  meaning I get up very early.
The only other ritual in the day is much later a meditation (and one of the three sports: weight-lifting, yoga or walking).
If I still feel under the weather, I try to come into contact with nature or beauty:

©Brigitta Huegel

- that's why I have subscriptions for museums and the Botanic Garden and photo-galleries.
I draw (wonderful to bring my mind to rest).
Reading poetry, and then getting into touch with my own creativity works also:

©Brigitta Huegel

I meet people - and talk with them - sometimes with mere strangers who tell me often very interesting things. To satisfy my "wanderlust" in a normal week, I often go by train to a spot I do not know (I have Knut, but I prefer trains to cars when I go on my own).
Sometimes I keep my mouth shut for a while - very invigorating too (for those around me, and myself)...
And the discipline of learning Italian is sometimes like a wonderful "girdle for the brain" - though I might whine and wail that I have forgotten all I learned three days before, and that I will never get fluent in it - I see my plodding progress - and plod on.
And of course - beside my work - there are wonderful people to thank and think of - and letters or mails to send, blogs to read or to write.
You see: I won't get lost in Alice's Pool of Tears.

©Brigitta Huegel

I mean: that would ruin my Amy Winehouse-eyeliner -- than I would have to start drawing it again....
Oh no - I feel better this way, quite centred again.

PS: Before you ask - the dog does not belong to me, I saw it and quickly took a photo.