Life is nothing if not a daring adventure, but shit man, there’s a huge amount of suffering we seem to put ourselves through everyday.
Go back to yesterday or earlier today. How many thoughts ran through your mind just on the way to work? Were they mostly anxious, worrisome thoughts? Who’s in charge here anyways?
What’s the root of this suffering and is there any solution?
It takes a lifetime to grow into everything we are capable of becoming. Sometimes I look back examining who I was, what motivated me and explore who I’ve become. I recognize I’m an ever evolving experiment in human behaviour.
It’s not a new thought, in fact it’s about a 2500 year old thought; Once we realize that suffering comes from our failure to accept reality, not from reality itself, we immediately develop the capacity to rise above all kinds of conditions whether they are positive, negative or neutral.
Once we detach from outcomes and are able to be mindful in the present moment a shift occurs that everyone in your life feels. EVERYONE.
I earn 30% of what I did six years ago. That sounds pretty painful, no?
I’ve lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in the past four years on bad investments. Definitely stressful, right?
I lost 32 relationships in a single two hour period last year. That’s pretty high up there on the suffering scale.
I see sibling relationships I envy and can’t seem to recreate in my own family. Emotionally painful.
My right knee and hip have been chronically sore for a year even after seeing five different specialists. Frustration.
Yet today I’m the happiest I’ve been in my lifetime. I believe this is because I made a decision to challenge what I think and what is actual reality. In doing so I’m choosing to take a journey to find more effectiveness, not more stability.
I’m not able to impact the majority of what happens to me, but I’m 99% able to control how I react to it. I’m not perfect at this, it’s a practice, but I endeavour to be as unattached as possible from outcomes. When I get it right it’s liberating.
“Fears of the future are just as useless as the painful thoughts of the past. They have nothing to do with how we can be happy right now. So they deserve to be labeled and put in the mental spam box.” James Altucher
If you find yourself clinging to what you want to happen in the future and are consistently disappointed with outcomes then I would say life is distracting you from something. It might be time to slow down and find out what it is that you are being distracted from. It’s time to get really curious and flexible.
“A flexible mind is more important than a flexible body.”
I don’t want to make this post too complicated and lengthy, so let me leave you with this thought. As you become aware that the unhappiness in your life, to a large extent, is due to the thought processes in your mind not about the situation you find yourself in, what do you want to do about it?