I keep getting this message over and over again; it's nothing new now or 5 years ago: stop fighting and just allow what is happening in life to happen. I get the message from friends (several!), books, and mysteriously often enough from my positive-thought email subscription to my daily inbox: Eckhart Tolle, The Universe, etc.
I had an brief yet enlightening conversation with a new friend on Saturday that was so compelling, I followed up with a phone call to gain more insight. I've heard it all before, but it had new meaning, new application. It was almost as if I was hearing it for the first time, since I seem to have forgotten the art of allowing, along with so many other tools I have come to utilize over the years to stay present and positive- they have all fallen by the wayside as I've embraced habits of fear and negative thinking that I thought I had left in my past.
And this is what I am learning yet again... (click read more, bottom right)
It's no secret knowledge that I have been struggling all of 2015, or so it seems, in the areas of relationship, finance, career, and physical health due to injury. This year has been a wake-up call to some detrimental patterns of behavior I have: poor judgement, bad decisions, and self-sabotage. I thought these behaviors were recently emerging, but it seems they have been patterns for some time. As a result, my life is not where I expected it would be; in fact, it's quite miserable in my perspective. I feel I have devolved rather than grown through this period of struggle. It is painful to look in the mirror of my heart and mind, at present. Somehow I have come to believe that this period is permanent rather than a transition; the struggles will never end, and I am stuck in this space and place of pain and unhappiness. And that's where the trouble begins: with those thoughts of permanence and stuck-ness.
However, my wise friend advised me to see this time as period of transition, and accept it; accept what I'm going through instead of struggling against it. It feels like I've been fighting and struggling the entire year, excluding a few bright moments of summertime when I was working contract full-time, had my own space, had enough money, and was running and cycling and enjoying being active outdoors. She reminded me that this time is cyclical, and perhaps I need to move inward and withdraw because of my sensitive nature and strong emotions, yet try not to beat myself up or fight against what I need to do right now. The withdrawal is a way to care for myself and where I am is fine–it's exactly where I should be. It's about changing my perspective and not being so hard on myself. What am I getting from withdrawal toward solitude; what need is it meeting?
She used the metaphor of an ocean current, to which, of course, I relate. Lean into the experience and let the current carry me. This is what I am working on at present. To BE present, for one, and to just allow. Let what is happening happen, don't try so hard to change everything, allow where I am to be okay. Most importantly, stop beating myself up about where I am in life and thinking negative thoughts about my situation. Bow down to the wave and let it wash over me, until I rise again. If I can accept this transition stage, realize that it is NOT going to last forever–current events and circumstances and my drive for isolation doesn't mean I will struggle and isolate for the rest of my life–I could find contentment again, in the present. I could be fully present and perhaps find some joy in life once again. My happiness is about my perception of myself and life. I've had incredible joy in my life, I've also had incredible lows. What is more difficult is perhaps this mundanity, these doldrums where nothing seems to change; there is no joy, just existence. Perhaps I have created too many highs in life, so that the lows are unbearable and I do not know how to live the in-between. I don't know how to have a normal life where day to day experience is not a mind-blowing adventure. But it feels like everything has stopped and I am not living; I am on an inter-dimensional plane of grey dullness of work, eat, sleep. It's boring. I am bored. Ennui is the best way to extinguish a creative light like me. And so, I struggle against it. But I will work on bowing to the wave, allowing it to wash over me, until I rise again.
Credit: Book excerpt from "Awakening" by Shakti Gawain
...Small actions in a dynamic system will trigger vast and unexpected changes