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Equanimity Is Your Superpower

What the f**k is equanimity?

That was my reaction when I first heard the word. Surprisingly, I’d never heard it until I began to go more deeply into my spiritual journey where it is commonly used and valued across several spiritual traditions.

So, what does it mean and why have I defined it as a superpower? In simple terms, equanimity is a state of calmness and composure which is undisturbed by experience.

I see it as a state of being that follows the middle way, it provides evenness of mind in moments of joy and in moments of difficulty, allowing things to be as they are without becoming overly attached to the outcomes of those things.

In a state of equanimity, we are open to accepting the changing nature of all things which allows us to be at peace as change unfolds around us.

In life, developing equanimity is a game-changer because things change so quickly leaving us challenged, emotional and in a state dysfunction where circumstances don’t align with expectations.

Life is changing more rapidly than ever before with technology, social media and economic uncertainty all driving significant shifts in how we live. These changes mean that we may be challenged professionally, economically, mentally, and emotionally so learning how to respond to these challenges takes wisdom and courage in order not to become overwhelmed.

That’s where equanimity comes in. It’s the superpower that allows us to be open to these new experiences without being overwhelmed by them.

On a personal level, transitioning out of a job during the pandemic while having my wife become seriously ill during her pregnancy with our second child, there were many opportunities for me to become overwhelmed by all the events going on around me.

The thing that saved me from being swept away by negativity was my acceptance of what was going on and my awareness of the mind patterns that wanted to resist the situation rather than accept it as it was.

From this came a sense of calmness that I now recognise to be equanimity. I was able to embrace the flow of change and from that came peace.

In the world right now, people are facing difficult moments in their lives. Maybe you have been made redundant? Maybe you need to re-skill, perhaps you have been isolated from those you love, or maybe you are suffering financially?

In all cases, meeting these challenges with calmness will give you the strength to see the deeper lesson in them and rebuild with wisdom and humility.

It doesn’t mean you don’t get scared or feel negative emotions, it just means you don’t become them, and you have the evenness of mind to transcend them.

The Tao Te Ching says: “There is a time for being ahead, a time for being behind; a time for being in motion, a time for being at rest; a time for being vigorous, a time for being exhausted; a time for being safe, a time for being in danger.

“The Master sees things as they are, without trying to control them. She lets them go their own way and resides at the centre of the circle.”

With the power of equanimity, you can see the bigger picture unfolding and respond to the challenge with compassion and courage even in impossible situations.

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