Have you ever noticed that most people, including myself, though it is better now, have the tendency to focus on what’s wrong?
There is this tendency to compare to what was good and what we liked in one moment and we want to hold on to, to what we think is undesirable in the next moment and push away what we don’t want, which is normal. However, the fact that everything is always in flux, ie situations, moods, energy levels, how our bodies feel ie more or less good; the act of trying to hold onto what we want more of and push away what we don’t want can cause a lot of suffering.
From this place, we might continually resist life, overfocus on the negative or what’s lacking in life.
What we can do, is begin to transform our relationship to what is, by acknowledging the preference of what we’d like while not resisting what we don’t want so much.
One of the ways we can do this by bringing our present attention or presence to whatever is unfolding in the moment, let’s say it’s a sensation or emotion you don’t want to feel. Can you allow yourself to feel it without a judgment, without making it right or wrong? Can you feel everything that arises, such as thoughts, feelings, etc., arises because of awareness itself? Whatever we’re experiencing is arising in awareness itself. And, that awareness is deeper and more vast and allows for all experience.
That doesn’t mean you still don’t have preferences though. However, the key to greater happiness is to learn to be present with what is. Because everything we are experiencing is an experience that will also come and go.
One practice I like to give my clients is to practice being present though out the day with whatever they’re feeling, and when less desirable feelings or thoughts arise, try being with them with more acceptance and less resistance, knowing that this is an experience that’s moving through you. And even if it’s a negative emotion you don’t want to feel, it may be arising to finally be met with your love and acceptance that you didn’t receive earlier in life. Others in your life couldn’t give that to you because they didn’t know how to give it to themselves. These undigested feeling arise as part of our healing not because there’s something wrong with us. But it’s a part of us wanting to return home, to the love and acceptance from you that no external authority could give it.
Stay with the spaciousness beyond the thoughts and feelings, that allows for all experience, that is the key. It may be a little difficult at first, but it is a bit like going to the gym every time you do it, you unhook a little bit each time from your past conditioning and create a space for healing and self-compassion to occur.