The word itself makes us cringe.
It just sounds painful.
It is painful.
It can bring up every insecurity and self-doubt we’ve ever had about ourselves.
But that’s the situation we create when we conclude: “I didn’t get what I needed.”
It’s part of the endless cycle of samsara. Our inner brat comes out. We get ideas in our heads about what our lives should look like, what job we think we should have, where we think we should live, who we think we should be in a relationship with, and so on.
We take an action, and we attach to our own expectations of what should come next instead of letting it go as it’s meant to happen.
We think we need everything.
“I think I should” brings up entitlement, and…who are we, anyway? The world owes us nothing. The list can go on and on. The key words we need to hear ourselves using (and dismiss) are think and should. As soon as we find ourselves thinking we should anything, we need to redirect our thought patterns.
What if instead we say, “I feel like I want this job/home/person in my life?” It changes the whole dynamic of the thought, doesn’t it? Go ahead and try it for yourself. This language acknowledges that it’s a want, which makes it sting a bit less if we don’t get it. When we don’t get something we think we should have or need, it’s a crisis. We feel hurt and rejected by the world.
It’s part of the human struggle. When we learn to break free of attachment we find our level of suffering drops drastically. When we acknowledge that our attachments are formed because we think we need something to be secure, and we then acknowledge that security is in fact an illusion, it gives us our power back. This allows us to be comfortable exactly where it is we are right now, no matter how unstable or shaky the ground may feel beneath us.
When something is not part of the world’s plan for us we cannot will anything into existence no matter how hard we meditate on it. We can manifest things when they are in line with our plan, but trying to manifest anything that is not meant for us, and attaching to the outcome only results in frustration and pain. We have to accept this, and just do our part to help improve the world and ourselves.
That’s the hard truth to swallow. It hurts. It tastes like sh*t. It wants to come back up. And it remains a challenge for us as adult humans to accept that said thing is just not meant for us right now. We want to know why. We have such a hang up on why. Our ego mind needs to know! Because when my mind can’t find a logical explanation for why something that seems so fitting is just not happening, it goes crazy. It obsesses and than it turns on me. Familiar?
“Why am I not getting this job?”
“Why isn’t he/she calling me?”
“Why did we not get approved for that apartment?”
Why, why, why. We can drive ourselves crazy with why. I know I do.
And funnily enough, the times those things didn’t go how I thought they should are the times that the best thing ever happened just a short while later.
Realizing something on an intellectual level doesn’t make it easier for our hearts to let go of something they were set on though. It still hurts. Disappointment stings. It feels like rejection, and rejection brings up all those nasty little voices that whisper:
“See? You aren’t good enough.”
“See? You took a risk and didn’t get it, you should just quit now.”
“See? You are a failure.”
“Just go back to where it’s safe and stay there.”
Blah, blah, blah.
This is where we really have to practice humility and acceptance. It’s not for us to understand why.
When I sit and look at the beauty of the Earth, and the perfection found in the flow of nature, it’s easy for me to stop my mind and say, “See why are you so convinced you know better than God?” And I get that. I admit I don’t know better than God.
This is where I really see just how much my meditation practices and self-esteem work has strengthened me since I started. Once upon a time I would’ve listened to those voices. I would have thrown in the towel, walked away from everything I am trying to accomplish, gone back to my sh*t bartending gig, and hated myself for doing so. I would’ve quit just before the magic happened. I would’ve grown a little more hateful and bitter towards the world, enforcing my distorted perception that everyone else gets whatever they want and the world is stacked against me.
I would’ve quit it all to run back to an illusion of security.
We find we can breathe into the shakiness instead of running away in a panic. We touch the flow and we feel okay there. We trust the plan and we trust the process.
That’s where we find the magic—in the flow. And I feel like I want to live in the flow.
Author: Lindsay Carricarte
Editor: Travis May
Photos: Flickr/Hernan Pinera