Monday whispered thoughts of rain all morning and afternoon, with undulating gray clouds stretching across the sky. I was beneath them broad forking the lower field and feeling anxious about money, as so happens from time to time. As I worked, I listened to an episode of Redefined Life, a podcast my friend Aaron Mead recently began.
The conversation between Aaron and Jeff Shapiro, a wing-suit BASE jumper, played in my ears as I pushed the tines of the broad fork down into soil and pulled back, loosening the bed. The rhythm of the work slowly eased its fingers into the jumbled knot in my stomach, and as it loosened, the conversation turned to happiness when Shapiro said that happiness is a choice, and that nothing outside of us can give or take away happiness.
The warm air and cloudy sky afforded the perfect temperature to be working outside; the trees in full green framed the field and rose across the hillside into the mountains; my body was moving, and I felt that choice to be happy.
The antidote to anxiousness is presence. Out in the field, working with soil and plants, I fall into rhythm and it leads me to presence, which in turn opens my body to choices beyond anxiety. Like happiness, presence and awareness of the now is a choice, and like anything else, the more you practice making that choice, the more you say “yes” to it, the more natural it becomes.
We are creatures of habit. I’d like my habit to be happiness.
Aaron also interviewed me for Redefined Life. We spoke about writing, farming, and creating a business. I was nervous to hear the episode,not quite remembering all that I said, but it served as a reminder to me why I do all that I do. To hear it, visit Redefined Life online.