We can learn to recognize that the difficulty is our path instead of trying to escape from it. This is a radical yet necessary change in our perspective. When uncomfortable things happen to us, we rarely want to have anything to do with them. We might respond with the belief ‘Things shouldn’t be this way’ or ‘Life shouldn’t be so messy.’ Who says? Who says that life shouldn’t be a mess? When life is not fitting our expectations of how it’s supposed to be, we usually try to change it to fit our expectations. But the key to practice is not to try to change our life but to change our relationship to our expectations — to learn to see whatever is happening as our path.
Ezra Bayda, Being Zen
photo philip halling
Become aware of impatience as it arises during the day. Be aware of the signals in the body (tapping fingers) and the talk in the mind (“Hurry up!”) that accompany impatience. Ask yourself, “Why am I in a rush? What do I want to rush ahead to get to?” See what answers arise.
Jan Chozen Bays, How to train a Wild Elephant
photo david pickersgill
No matter what the situation
we are responsible for our own mind states
Western laziness consists of cramming our lives with compulsive activity,
so that there is no time at all to confront the real issues.
A short presentation by the always entertaining Robert Sapolsky, showing how prolonged exposure to the stress response causes more problems than stress itself:
Not holding on is tough to do because we are not honest a lot of the time which is because of fear – the fear of losing our self-image. The social pressure to get ahead and win is so ingrained that we are anxious about failure.
This anxiety about doing becomes an anxiety about being, because in a driven life, doing is being: you’re supposed to be doing and you are assessed by it.