The Stress Of Desiring

Chapter 3 – 

Here is a fact: we, the most modern beings ever to live on planet Earth are driven by the same nervous system, our sympathetic nervous system, as were our most distant ancestors, the earliest version of Homo sapiens, who lived in a volatile environment.

It’s well documented that, as it prepares the body for a fight or flight response, the sympathetic system acts mostly unconsciously.

It’s also well-documented that most of our stressors come from little things that ‘afflict’ us daily.

Not from huge dilemmas or life-threatening circumstances. At least not until the ‘X that marks the spot’ begins to flash on the karmic blueprint of our life.

Just a thought: isn’t it odd that a system named Sympathetic (after an adjective synonymous with commiseration and the expression of sympathy) should be the one with that hair-fine trigger that directs our body’s rapid involuntary response and keeps us in a damaging nervous frazzle … if we let it?

Most of our stressors also spring out of our imagination, as we imagine thoughts and reactions, usually unpleasant ones, from those closest to us.

Unintentionally, we self-sabotage.

Into ‘the future’, we project various moments negatively engineered.

There are times when details in our imagination provide hope, desires and goals.

But our tendency is to live stuck in a self-absorbed interpretation of What-Is.

With one foot in the past and one in an elusive future tainted by the past, we tend to colour dark the details that unsettle us.

Once we unconsciously rob ‘the future’ from any lateral creativity, we end up stirring most new opportunities and circumstances through a blend of insecurity, doubt and constriction that can only fail us … again.

And, on the whole, our desires are mostly for material things.

We imagine a new home, a new job, a new car, a new love, a baby or a puppy. We imagine that one at a time, they will reset our mindscape.

Sure! Complications, lockdowns, illness, disappointments and mortal rumination have always led many of us to reassess our lives and make many big choices.

We are also prone to kneejerk reactions and compulsions. So, our aim should be that, when looking back after many years, our current ‘innovation’ should still show up as a worthwhile choice – not one to regret.

Heads up: it is not when our mind is in fight or flight mode that we should think of big existential questions and significant changes.

It’s not the time to change jobs or divorce, get married or escape to another country.

The necessary but uncomfortable conversations we need to have with ourselves are best held once the inner-outer chaos has subsided. Once our thoughts are clear.

When we feel, think and act consciously, we become the observer of our emotions, thoughts and behaviour. It is then that we stop being the Judge and the Jury.

We breathe consciously instead of surrendering to the constriction that grips our gut and spikes through our solar plexus.

We also cut the puppet strings that would otherwise have us agitating ourselves to the tune of others’ words and actions.

How limited can our daily options be if we don’t learn to speak with each other over our divides?

The moment something goes wrong with our internet connection, we do all we can to problem-solve a.s.a.p.

When our efforts fail, we seldom hesitate to seek support from our partner, children, siblings and friends. Should their efforts fail as well, we don’t deliberate too long before booking in a technician.

Serious question: why aren’t we quick to problem-solve the first signs of disconnection from those of our clan, our social group and colleagues the moment a crackle and a frazzle threaten our connection? After all, when our Wi-Fi connection randomly drops off or weakens, don’t we immediately move into alert-mode?

Good news: our survival doesn’t depend on how well we impose our views and judgment on ourselves – or on others near and far.

We don’t need to know what they think about themselves, about us, about the world at large.

We don’t need more of anything once we are physically and emotionally safe.

Once we are blessed with reasonable good health and a safety net that enables us to provide for ourselves and, of course, for those who karmically depend on us, we don’t ‘truly’ need more of anything.

Once we are conscious that no material thing and nothing beyond our thoughts and emotions can add a sustainable degree of happiness to our life, we can prioritise differently.

More good news: we don’t need to know why something or other has happened to us or why it is happening in the world.

The true root-cause of anything will always remain beyond our limited understanding of cause and effect.

Beyond our understanding of karmic purpose as an energetic recalibration, as well.

Besides, anything that has already happened belongs to the past.

 

Bottom line #1: here and now, our mission is to ‘simply’ accept What-Is.

To allow it to be.

To deal with it from the inside-out.

So, as we actively accept that complication and ‘pain’ are our best teachers, a desire to ‘let it be and just be’ would take us a long way towards a state of much-needed mental relaxation and inner/outer self-care.

And we smile at that and chuckle.

We got it.

Bottom line #2: the desire for Calm and Equanimity is well worth adding to the top of our bucket list.

 

So, dear Reader, are we now ready and willing to dance it up from the inside-out?

Like, right now?

 

Continue reading …

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