How much time do we spend thinking about what we need to change? Our hair, our bodies, the way we feel, the way others are (the list is endless).
“If only…” is followed by a list of things we think would fill the endless void inside us. If only they loved us back. If only we had more money. If only we were prettier.
“Then…” follows the result of that thing that will bring us the happiness we crave. Finally, we will be fulfilled.
When we get in a mode of wanting and wishing, nothing will be enough. Because we always know there is the possibility of having more. I think of the story of Sisyphus rolling the stone up the hill, just for it to come back down. Just for him to try again. And again.
All of this has made me realize that there will always be another thing that we will want. No matter what you gain, there will always be more things to gain. And there will always be things you will lose along the way.
As humans, we are purposeful beings put here to create. So of course, we are designed to want things to be better. To continue to build. Happiness feels good, and pain feels bad, so obviously, we strive for happiness.
But that’s not how it works. We get all the emotions. We lose. We gain. We cry. We laugh. So if we can’t stop wanting more or experiencing all the feelings, how do we end our suffering?
The secret? We must realize we are separate from external things. People. Places. Materials. And yes, even your thoughts are external. Because YOU are the little seat of the self that watches all these things happen. Have you ever wondered who is hearing your thoughts? Or who is feeling your feelings? It’s you. It might be closer to your being than another person or a new bag, but it is still not YOU.
That little self that sees and listens has the choice to see and listen. When it feels pain, it can let it exist. It does not fear pain because the brain fears pain. That is not you. When it hears negative thoughts, it can let them pass by. Your thoughts are not you.
This does not mean it won’t be frustrating to feel, hear or experience things or people that don’t feel good. It doesn’t mean you aren’t going to want more or want to experience things differently. But you can choose your interactions with the things that don’t feel good by just watching them exist. The more you try to change things, the less you get to exist fully.
The more you can enjoy what you have and let life just be…the happier you will be.
You, my dear, have full control over what you dwell on and notice. Come back to your heart. Come back to the little self that watches. Honor her. Let things flow. Let things pass.
You do not have to control. You can let things be.