I received an email a few weeks ago from someone asking for some support and I thought it would be good to share the question with their permission. The person was asking generally, why did it feel that after all “the work” she’d been doing it felt like she was still so far away from where she wanted to be? Why it was still so hard for her? She wanted to know what she was doing wrong?
First, there’s nothing wrong with her or what she was doing and yes, it can be quite exhausting when we set ourselves up in a deeper inner journey (especially if we bounce from one practice to another, try different things and hear various teachings) not that this isn’t good, it might just take some time for us to process it all and find steadiness in our practice.
One of the first lessons I received from one of my first teachers was: there’s no shortcut. This really stuck with me. In this matter, the matter of getting to know ourselves, expand our capacities of awareness and self compassion there isn’t a shortcut. It’s a path that takes courage, acceptance, willingness, commitment but also flow, flexibility, integrity and kindness.
What this person is asking is the whole discovery journey of a lifetime in itself. Dissolving the constructed rigid idea of who am I supposed to be? How can I get this right? How can I be the best version of myself right now? How can I get to point B without but without integrating and accepting all that I am at this moment?
I know that when we are in deepest of our holes, in the dark, in the doubt, in fear it can be so challenging to see the cycles of life, the ongoing process. We forget, we sweat the little details because our mind is so wired to look at the negativity bias, the parts that are not “doing it right”. It feels daunting and just like a boomerang effect, we assume we are back at square one and all the work we’ve done is gone. That’s simply not true, it just feels like it when we lose our perspective, when we lose touch.
The same is reflected in our meditation practice, which is why this practice is so incredible, because it humbles us, it remind us, it opens us up. We are in a human experience, expect to ride waves of discomfort, uncertainty, clarity, connection. They will just keep showing up and keep on coming as we steadily keep showing up with an open and soft heart, embracing it all, integrating it all, trusting in our capacity of widening the circle more and more. No shortcuts, no score board. Simply choices day by day, moment by moment, not to necessarily arrive anywhere you had set up for yourself, not to be the best version of yourself but to be the most whole, compassionate, fluid person you are.