Today's post is inspired by the chapter, "Living without Striving" in Wayne Dyer's book, Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life (p. 94).
This was such a powerful chapter to me when I read it the first time, and in reading what I wrote in my journal, I'm just as moved now. That's why I chose it to write on today.
The underlying advice is to always be present. Be here now. "Let go of wondering about doing the right thing," Dyer tells us.
I don't know about you, but that's so liberating for me. I'm a worrier. I always want to make the best decision, the best choice. I weigh the options carefully. I try to think five moves ahead... will I still be happy with my choice? I could be buying socks or buying a house. It's ridiculous. But I am getting better. Really.
The thing is, the Universe (or the great Mother, as Dyer refers to that Source in the book... or God) is perfectly capable and in perfect control. Everything is in perfect harmony. Like the biggest, most beautiful symphony ever. We are being taken care of and provided for at all times. All we need to do is let go, relax, surrender, and accept that sustenance that's being given to us freely and consistently.
Even 2,500 years ago, in the time of Lao-tzu (the ancient philosopher who wrote the Tao, which Dyer's book is inspired by and based off of), living this way of utter surrender and acceptance was different. Even back then people were looked down upon for living their lives this way and thinking differently. Lao-tzu says he was "an outsider who is unlike most people."
That's exactly how I've always felt, and why I related to much to this chapter in Dyer's book. I've always felt just a little different from other people. Like I saw things differently. Or felt things differently. Or both, most likely. So it was great to read that even thousands of years go, there were people who felt different and like they didn't fit in.
It's considered normal to strive for more. Even back in Lao-tzu's time. Really, though, we have all we need. But if we stop striving, stop reaching for more, we're typically looked down upon and considered unmotivated, lazy, and maybe even stupid. Why?
What you need to know, and what we all need to remember when we're feeling that urge to strive come over us, is that when we stop striving, and just BE, we're not missing out on anything. Instead, we get a strong sense of inner peace. Try it. Or maybe you already know the feeling. I've felt it periodically throughout my life.
Still, it's so easy to want more.
More money - so we can do more, have more, perhaps even feel more secure.
More time - so we can do more, do it all.
Trade "striving for arriving," suggests Dyer.
Accept what is offered to you. Know that it's exactly what you need.
"Change how you see what's here and now in your life," for then it will become exactly what you need in order to be happy (Dyer).
When you stop striving, and stay in the present moment, accepting what's offered, knowing you're being taken care of, you will find that you have no concerns and no fears. They disappear. In its place is a sense of being connected to the Source.
For those of you who practice affirmations, or if you'd like to try one on for size, here's a suggestion from Dyer:
"It is all perfect. God's love is everywhere and forgets no one. I trust in this force to guide me."
I've been striving a lot lately. I think that's part of my feeling of discontent.
Striving for more money. Trying to figure out HOW to get it. How to make my budget balance out where I bring in more than I put out (which is not the case right now).
I need to let go and accept. I am where I am and it's perfect.
Just as the first quote below says, "the best way is not to fight it, just go... When you fight something, you only make it stronger."
Our society praises fighting. Fight for what's "yours." Fight for what you believe in. Fight for your right to _______ (party?). (just kidding on that last one) But it's not where we should be putting our energy. Many wise people have stated the proverbial, "What you resist, persists."
So don't fight it.
It's a gift from the Universe, specially designed for you.
Accept that perfection. Because in doing so, you open the door to more perfection.
Quotes of the Day:
“The best way is not to fight it, just go. Don't be trying all the time to fix things. What you run from only stays with you longer. When you fight something, you only make it stronger.” (Chuck Palahniuk, Invisible Monsters)
“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don't resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” (Lao Tzu)
“Some people believe holding on and hanging in there are signs of great strength. However, there are times when it takes much more strength to know when to let go and then do it.” (Ann Landers)