The past tense is a grammatical tense whose function is to place an action or situation in past time.
I operate in the past tense. That’s my lane. I know there’s all this talk about being present, how you need to be present, have to be present, present, present, present...Nope get away from that. Get past it.
I didn't always. For a long while I operated in the present tense...Ie: I was always tense.
You can’t do anything well when you’re tense.
If you’re anything like me and you’re constantly feeling tension, why would want to hang out in the present tense? That’s where the tension is. It’s present! Naturally you’d want to get past the tension in order to move forward and thus “past tense”, right?
That’s where I hang out now. It feels better.
One of the reasons I started writing in the first place was because I was always tense. Things were getting to me and I was having trouble getting past them. Writing was (is) a way for me to work thru the tension I was feeling, sit down and journal about the experience or just mouth off into the voice memos on my iphone while in my car, say anything I needed to say and get it out of my system.
And just like invoking the 24 hour rule on an email (write it, give it 24hrs, read it, don’t send it!) I didn't have to do anything with it (Or I could turn it into a newsletter that thousands now read every Sunday) I could vent, put it down on paper, read it back the next day, think about whether or not I was completely irrational, learn from it and often laugh at it.
It didn't matter, because I had absolutely no control over the other individual or situations that were making me tense in the first place. What I know now is that I only have control over myself but the point was, I was allowing these things to make me physically and mentally tense and I had to find a way to listen, not react and subsequently alleviate the tension so that I didn’t have this constant pain in my neck and scoff on my brow.
Here’s a list things that seem to help me. Yes, you can spend a lot of time working to relieve tension but trust me, it's a lot better than spending time around things that cause it.
Try ‘em out and let me know. They’re in no particular order.
If you have any tips or other things you do to release tension, let me know. I’m all ears!
Exercise (Be careful here, too much HIIT can actually cause more tension)
Warm Epsom Salt Baths
I’m also starting to get into PMR; Progressive Muscle Relaxation. Research shows that relaxing your body physically can also release psychological tension and stress, minimizing your stress reactivity and decreasing your experience of chronic stress. There are other effective ways to minimize psychological and emotional stress, but PMR can offer you one more tool to manage stress, which can help you to build your resilience overall. I’ll let you know more on this as I’m just at the very beginning stages.
For me now, I’m all about getting (and staying) past tense.