What Does The Fox Say? STOP BREATHE RELAX LISTEN
My work is founded on two big philosophies, the first one is FEEL THE WILD. Which is about our relationship with the planet and with the natural world. The other is about our relationship with ourselves and is based on a mantra that I created, STOP BREATHE RELAX LISTEN. It has not only helped me through my solo wilderness expeditions, but also in my personal life. Each words leads to an action. STOP and create your boundaries. BREATHE and get a better perspective. RELAX and see the clarity. LISTEN and make sounded choices.
Lets use a snow globe to make an analogy on the mantra. Imagine that the globe is you. The liquid inside is your capacity to process information. The snowflakes are your thoughts, your worries, your anxieties, everything that populates your mind. What is inside, in the middle, in this case a beautiful wintery landscape, with a bear, a bird, and a tree, are the insights you are looking for, the eureka moment, the solution to your problems. From the minute you get up in the morning, until the very end of the day, your life is like turning upside down this globe and shaking it. Everything is all over the place and it gets much harder to make any good decisions. Stop and create your boundaries is about setting the globe down. Breathe and get a better perspective is letting the snowflakes slowly settle down. Relax and see the clarity is about being able to see what is inside the globe. Finally listen and make sound choices is about discovering the surprise at the center of the globe. You realize that the snowflakes, which represent your anxieties and worries, are still in there. But instead of being all over the space, and hiding the insight that is right in front of you, now they are at the bottom.
We are creatures of habits. We need rituals to help us reinforce the values and things we believe in, that are important to us. I created a breathing exercise that helps me practice not only mentally but physically the mantra Stop Breathe Relax Listen. Let me share this breathing exercise with you.
Stop. Exhale. Push forward.
Breathe. Inhale. Bring the air to your nose.
Relax. Exhale. Let your arms go. Along with the tensions.
Listen, inhale, sweeping your arms up and connect with your heart and mind.
You do that three times in the morning and it gives you the capacity to connect with the mantra and hopefully helping you in the process to manage stressful situations we find ourselves in.
Just like you have the breathing exercise that connects the body to the mantra, the logo connects the eyes and the brain to these 4 words – stop breathe relax listen. We begin with an open square in the middle. By the way, none of the shapes are closed because we want the energy to move around. The square represent the boundaries. It is also the figure created by your hands and fingers as you push the air forward during the breathing exercise. See below.
Then within that square, within your boundaries, you take the action of breathing which is represented by open triangles pointing up. You can think of them as trees giving you oxygen. Just beneath it you have this curved line, like a ripple, which represents water, because relaxing and water simply go together. Finally, the square is in a circle opened at the top so that it can receive from above. It represents the action of listening to something that is bigger than you – Life.
Stop and create your boundaries. Think of it as a period at the end of a sentence. It gives all the preceding words their meaning while at the same time, setting the stage for a new thought. It Creates a space for introspection and helps you taking ownership of the moments, rather than letting them define you. It is about letting in what empowers you and pushing away what doesn’t.
We often find ourselves in situations where life throws you a curve ball and suddenly everything you took for granted has been taken away, thrown in the air, and tossed around. Your sense of stability disappears. Stop Breathe Relax Listen is a tool that can help us turn the insanity into peace, the chaos into calm, and manage whatever life throws our way. I hope that within those challenging times, you won’t loose hope. Each of us will find a way to grow and become better. It is in these tragedies that we rise up and reassess how we want to move forward. This is an amazing opportunity for the human race, for all of us, to come together and choose a future that we can be proud of.