My favorite word is equanimity. I’m not completely sure why. The sound of the word rolls off my tongue in a mellifluous fashion. It has a musical flow to it. The Latin for equanimity is aequanimitas from aequo animo, which means “with even mind.” The dictionary definition is evenness of mind or right balance. I like that. Equanimity has connotations of harmony and balance. It means evenness on all levels—in thought, emotion, nature and life. To hear the word calls me to balance my actions and reactions, and to temper my ups and downs—or at least to try. I believe equanimity is the path to happiness. By happiness I mean a sense of contentment—a sort of middle of the road satisfaction with life. This is not the happiness of a roller coaster ride full of superlatives and tragedies. This is the middle path. The real joy of life is sitting in this balance between giddiness and despair, living on an even keel. It may not sound glamorous, but it does sound sustainable. I like that too.
Dr. Heather's musings about medicine, mindfulness and life.
Heather Krantz, M.D.
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