There’s nothing wrong with wanting to progress in life; after all, growth is our natural inclination. However, what I see is simple confusion amongst us. Perhaps this is just my own experience, but it seems our desire to become more is almost always in direct reflection to our perceived inadequacy.
I’d imagine I’m not the only one who has experienced this. Why is it most of us are striving to fix ourselves, as if we’re horrible flawed? In this way, our attempts to better ourselves are a secret master plan to one day escape ourselves. Could it be that really, we simply don’t love ourselves?
If you are reading this today with the underlying goal to better yourself, and you have a long, fancy list of resolutions this year that attribute to this plan, I invite you to join me in a new type of resolution this year. What if we just stopped trying to better ourselves? I know this sounds crazy, but what if, instead, we simply accepted ourselves as good enough?
Paradoxically, by not trying to be a good person—using the following information as a guide—it is my intention that we will be a far “better” people than we ever would by following some New Year’s resolution.
We’re Trying Too Hard
We are trying way too hard at trying to become something, rather than be ourselves. The point I really would like to drive home here is that there is nothing wrong with you. In fact, I can bet that the only thing “wrong” with you is that you think something is wrong with you. But we don’t believe this; rather, we don’t actually know this. We have yet to experience the completeness of ourselves that comes only through deep self-love and acceptance.
We’re trying so hard to change ourselves that we don’t even have time to get to know ourselves. In the process of our “self-development” we create futile to-do lists, goals to achieve, and an even greater list of things we shouldn’t be or do. As a side note, I just want to use this opportunity to suggest we remove the words “should” and “shouldn’t” from our vocabulary—they’re nasty words. In effect, they mean, “We’re wrong.”
What happens when we live our lives through a list of shoulds and shouldn’ts, aside from self-condemnation, is incredible amounts of suppression and repression. What we suppress eventually becomes repressed then depressed, and we all know what that feels like.
Don’t Suppress, Express
We suppress because we fear our wild nature. Our sexual energy is a powerful force we are actually terrified of. Little attention is given to the fact that we were born out of sexual energy; it is our life force. However, until we feel free to express it freely, we will never harness its creative power as a passion for healthy foodstuffs, fun fitness, and overwhelming love for ourselves and others, instead feeling used by it through lust, addictions, and all sorts of cravings.
What we have to do to actually “transcend” the shadowy sides of ourselves is scary: we have to live everything that is natural to us, and live it fully, without any reserve, blissfully, aesthetically. Sounds terrifying, right? Here’s the thing: we’ve never actually done this. Instead, we live like addicts when we do “express” our bad habits; we go blank and have zero self-awareness. Then, when it’s over, we wake back up—only now we are filled with guilt and condemnation. What hasn’t been done before is being totally and completely with the experience, accepting it. Then our love, shining so fiercely, brightens even the darkest places in ourselves.
By actually living it with full acknowledgment, a transformation will come.
If you try to transcend, you are going to repress, and repression is the sole reason why people stay stuck with the same New Year’s resolutions. This is the vicious circle. By wanting so badly to become a better person, we end up repressing, and because we repress, we never grow, and thus repress more. Therefore, all true progression takes place during the simple act of self-love, total self-awareness.
I’m willing to guess that most of us have a goal concerning diet or health on our resolution list. Using diet as an example, let’s take this opportunity to approach accomplishing this goal with a shift in awareness. In a state of total awareness we cannot be food addicts. Awareness makes us free. The problem with a resolution goal is it gives us a new bondage. First was the food, the sugar, the pizza, the overeating, whatever it was. Now the bondage has become the resolution.
We’re still not free. Our bondage toward food has just become a bondage toward healthy habits. To be fully aware instead means that all this addiction is gone—we can eat a cookie, we can eat a salad. You are neither against nor for. This is the true moderation we all seek but have yet to obtain because of our mental slavery towards our own disapproval.
A New Resolution
Can you see the futility of the goals we set? I want to inspire you to make an empowering shift in the way we set goals this year. I am sure no one else will be saying what I am here today: that once in a while, just for a change this year, if we want to smoke, eat, drink, or make love, then let’s do it! With one thing in mind: we are there doing it. Let’s bring total self-love into 2015 by remaining utterly aware in all we do.
The harm is in the addiction, not in the act. Wakefulness is not concerned with the act; it is concerned with the addiction. My message is that we all set ourselves free from all our addictions through the willingness to understand ourselves, and by doing so, we will grow beyond any resolution we could have invented.
How would self-love change the way you set goals? Would you find yourself achieving more easily coming from a place of inner abundance? Leave a comment and let me know how this impacts your goals!