- a catalogue of recent findings -



a close friend + mentor recently shared this clip with me, featuring mikhail baryshnikov in the 1985 film, white nights.

since that initial viewing, i must have watched this video a half-dozen times.

though the cinematic style is obviously quite dated, the quality of movement demonstrated here is truly second to none.

note the remarkable display of control in baryshnikov's movement, the grace + attention inherent to every step.

consider how you might model similar qualities in everyday movement.



this video evocatively demonstrates the affect of diaphragmatic breathing (or deep breathing) on the internal organs.

while i have been aware of other benefits to breathing in this way for some time (such as stress relief, lowered heart rate, increased oxygen intake, improved concentration, and so on), the fact that abdominal breathing in fact massages the gut contents was altogether new to me (although it makes perfect sense, especially when you see it here, doesn't it?).

consider how this automatic form of "internal massage" might affect digestive functions, among others (the video description lists digestive, renal, adrenal, liver, uterine, ovarian, pelvic floor, bowel and bladder functions as benefitting from this form of breathing).

most modern humans breathe high up in the chest - a dangerously shallow form of breathing that increases stress + anxiety, accelerates the heart rate, and deprives the blood of appropriate oxygen levels.

how have you been breathing?
look closely: when you breathe in, do your shoulders raise up or does your belly expand outward, or both?

ideally, you want to drive towards belly-expansion only: breathing deep into the diaphragm should allow the shoulders to remain loose + relaxed.



i've been LOVING this song by mtbrd, featuring audio clips from the 1990's tv series, twin peaks.

there's a hidden piece of wisdom here amongst the chill vibes, too. consider the following:

... i'm going to let you in on a little secret. every day, once a day, give yourself a present. don't plan it, don't wait for it, just let it happen. it could be a new shirt at the men's store, a catnap in your office chair, or two cups of good hot black coffee. like this. [takes a sip] aaaahh, MAN that hits the spot. nothing like a great cup of black coffee.

so. did you give yourself a present yesterday? be sure to give yourself one today. :)



steven pressfield

sometimes, when we’re terrified of embracing our true calling, we’ll pursue a shadow calling instead. that shadow career is a metaphor for our real career. its shape is similar, its contours feel tantalizingly the same. but a shadow career entails no real risk. if we fail at a shadow career, the consequences are meaningless to us. if you’re dissatisfied with your current life, ask yourself what your current life is a metaphor for.



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