We make plans for the future and we envision how we expect it to all look. Sometimes, almost immediately, life turns us in a different direction and we have to recalibrate. But other times, we get caught up in day-to-day living and years go by, and then one day, we have a vision of what it was that we had expected. We compare that ideal vision to where we are and we instantly begin to fight.
We fight against what is already happening in the moment as if it could be anything other than what it is. And all this does is make us unhappy- it brings suffering. We fight out of fear. We fight because we feel out of control.
Eckart Tolle said, “The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation, but your thoughts about it.”
We listen to our fear-based thoughts, we listen to the critic in our heads, we listen to everything except our hearts. We try to talk our way out of it; we bargain, threaten, and demand. We think we know EXACTLY what we need and exactly how things should be.
We think we know better than the wise flow of the universe, better than life itself.
But, what we must remind ourselves of is that we can’t see the path. We can’t see anything outside of our expectations and this automatically spawns disappointment and judgment…in ourselves, our life, and the decisions that we have made along the way.
We have the audacity to think that WE are in control. That WE are the ones who know best. What we fail to see is that if we give up the illusion of control- the rigidity and the fight to be in control- we will free up all of that energy used in fighting the present moment and we will be able to embrace where we are. We will be able to make each moment the best moment yet. Again and again and again.
In yoga, there are teachings on living a good and ethical life. One of these teachings is Santosha. Santosha is translated into ‘Contentment’. This teaching is about learning to be content in any and all situations. When we are bored, we are content being bored because “it already is what it is”. When we are sad, we are content feeling sad; when we are excited, we are content feeling excited. It’s all about acceptance and giving up the fight for the present moment to be anything other than what it already is. When we can calm down and stop fighting, we can become content.
If we can focus on being in this moment, whether pleasant or not, we can make it through anything. One breath at a time. One moment at a time. We can get so caught up in what may or may not happen that we miss out on LIVING in this moment. We can get so caught up on what we thought was best that we miss out on opportunities that have presented themselves in a different way.
So, relax. Our wishing things were different will not change how they already are. Relax and know that there is a path even though we can’t see it; that the universe has our backs and is listening. Take time to notice when the fight begins and with which thoughts. It always begins in the mind. If we can remind ourselves that “The universe knows better than I do” and “There is something to learn from everything when we stop fighting it.”, we will experience more ease and joy in our day. And when we practice awareness around our thoughts, we can begin to let go of the impulse to fight, blame, and control.
So, just for today, see what it’s like to act as if you chose every moment exactly as it unfolds. As if you know the plan and each moment is leading you exactly where you need to be. Because it is.
And as always, I will be trying right along with you.
Chat again soon,