I’m sitting on a balcony, watching the sun rise over Virginia beach. It’s November, so it’s brisk and chilly, but I like the cold and the calming sound of the ocean.
As a California girl, I practically grew up on the beach. Some of the best times of my life were spent stationed in Monterey, and having the amazing gift of the Pacific Ocean every single day. Since living in Maryland the past four years, this luxury has eluded me for the majority of the year. We make it out to the Eastern Shore for a few days each summer, and we will often take a week long trip to the ocean for a quick sandy respite.
But it’s never enough.
I never really get my fix. That’s why every fall when we drive down to Virginia Beach, I brave the cold and spend as much time as I possibly can outside, listening to the waves and breathing in the ocean air. It makes me feel connected…to what, I don’t know.
Humanity? The Universe? Myself? But somehow, I am at peace.
In the “Seven Spiritual Laws of Success”, Deepak Chopra speaks of the “Law of Pure Potentiality.” He describes pure potentiality as the field of all possibilities and infinite creativity; our spiritual essence.
The Law of Pure Potentiality could also be called the Law of Unity, because underlying the infinite diversity of life is the unity of one all pervasive spirit. There is no separation between you and this field of energy. The field of pure potentiality is your own Self. And the more you experience your true nature, the closer you are to the field of pure potentiality.
One pervasive spirit…how many other people are looking out at this same ocean right now, pondering their life’s struggles, striving for some modicum of peace in their chaotic internal world?
Deepak details the ways in which we can apply the law of pure potentiality, through meditation, silence and non-judgement. But he also points out that regularly spending time in direct communion with nature is essential.
Spending time in nature enables you to sense the harmonious interaction of all the elements and forces of life, and gives you a sense of unity with all of life. Whether it be a stream, a forest, a mountain, a lake, or the seashore, that connection with nature’s intelligence will also help you access the field of pure potentiality.
You must learn to get in touch with the innermost essence of your being. This true essence is beyond the ego. It is fearless; it is free; it is immune to criticism; it does not fear any challenge. It is beneath no one, superior to no one, and full of magic, mystery, and enchantment.
I’ve always noticed how much more alive I felt swinging kettlebells outside in the fresh air. I’ll often drag a few just outside the gym doors and do my swings on the lawn, just to have a change of pace.
When I lived in Monterey, it was a weekly experience: Camping in Big Sur, Hiking in Point Lobos, gathering around a bonfire in Carmel. I never truly realized what it was that made me feel so alive then, but it’s obvious to me now that I have been extremely successful in disconnecting my life from the very planet that sustains us.
Last night I took my bells out on to the beachfront. It was getting dark, and it was pretty chilly. It started off slow and was a bit of a struggle, but when I got into my groove it was awesome. My heart rate was in the 180s and I didn’t even feel it because it was so invigorating. I felt blessed to be able to move and sweat, and spend that time on the beach. I feel blessed to be sitting here on this freezing balcony with a cup of coffee, while everyone else in the house sleeps in. My mind is clear, and that is an incredible rarity.
Mindset is everything when it comes to fitness. Cultivating a strong mindset is imperative for growth and progress, and I think here, in the great outdoors, is where it breeds. If we can’t eliminate the stress that pollutes our lives and hinders our mindset, perhaps we can add in some quiet time…some time spent in nature, reconnecting to life.
I’m looking forward to another session on the beach tomorrow, to connecting with nature, and forging a stronger and healthier relationship with my Self. This thanksgiving, I find myself thankful for the ability to appreciate the moments that take my breath away.
This is one of those moments.