What Will Keep Us Happy? Real Expectations
I think a major frustration many people feel as they jump into the self-help book, workshop, lecture world, is from the misguided idea once we do “this or that” we will be happy ever after. It’s like all of a sudden we are bad math students in search of final answers to problems. I say bad math students because a true visionary knows our understanding of the universe is interconnected and always evolving.
What we often do is, one day we realize we need to work on some specific issue about our behavior that is creating chaos and pain in our lives.
We feel good because we have now identified the reason for the hurt. We go to a bookstore, or take a workshop with the title and description our specific “ailment”. After we finished the book or the workshop we feel empowered to change that “thing” which is heaving havoc. We are certain once we start applying the tools we have learned our lives will be just perfect. No more tears, no more sadness, only laughter. And then reality hits; some of us will actually have changed ourselves at the core and so the “ailment” will be no longer a problem. Some of us will realize we are still very much a victim of the original issue. And all of us will now be faced with the next challenge.
I believe real changes come from turning our attention inwards and truly getting to know ourselves. It sounds simple, and it can be, but it takes the courage to be ourselves and to listen to everything our hearts hold within them. It also takes time because situations will arise that will challenge our new and still frail way of being.
To both truly succeed in our efforts to change attitudes and to continue to seek more stability, we need to be realistic about our expectations. Let’s remember that life, our existence, is about learning. That is the fundamental purpose of life; to experience, to process, to change. Of course we want to go through the learning with grace and not chaos and again the answer lives in the deep and true connection we create with the self.
Knowing we are always being exposed to new situations that will in turn bring up different reactions will keep our expectations in check and remind us in life we are always walking through new doors. How exciting!