The Mindfulness Blog

subscribe to RSS feeds

« back to all blogs

Love Is A Rose, But You Better Not Pick It

I've been a Neil Young fan for a long time, but lately, some of his lyrics have really been talking to me. The early song "Love Is A Rose" (covered so well by Linda Ronstadt), is a perfect example.

Relating the lyrics of that song to mindfulness and meditation (which I am admittedly want to do), I'm struck by the notion that so many of us do use the word "mine", pretty much every day. "I', "me" "mine"-- they're all classic indicators of attachment. Just listen to the songs of another one of my favorite musicians (and my all-time favorite Beatle), George Harrison.

Meditation is all about non-attachment, which I equate-- in a business context-- with self-regulation of thoughts and emotions. People (be they judges, opposing counsel, clients or professional peers) will inevitably say or do things that set us off, but we can train ourselves to respond more skillfully. More civilly. More professionally.

How can we do that? Well, for me, it starts with the practice of meditation-- observing the thoughts or feelings, maybe even being curious about them, then letting them pass by neutrally, without attaching a particular significance or outcome. That's non-attachment, and it also helps me avoid the tendency to personalize things.

It's only natural that we want to examine the rose, smell the rose, touch the rose. Roses exist to attract our attention and engender those kinds of reaction. Much like like our thoughts and emotions, the rose exists to compete tirelessly for our attention. But when we embrace them (the metaphorical rose, or our thoughts, or our emotions)-- when we make them "mine"-- we usually end up with a handful of thorns. Ouch.

Training ourselves to self-regulate and avoid personalizing things is definitely not easy but just like physical fitness, the benefit of mental/emotional fitness is attainable through regular exercise and discipline. It's about the reps-- prioritizing our health and doing the work-- regularly.

So, the next time you see a rose (or think a thought, or feel an emotion) remember: Don't pick it! Don't make it "mine".


Categories: uncategorized
« back to all blogs



Name (required)
E-mail (required but not shown)


Blog Articles