Monday, January 27, 2014

"Worry is a misuse of imagination"

This beautiful quote by Dan Zadra is one I stumbled onto about a year ago.  I loved it instantly and began to apply it to my life.  The application was a practice of sorts...I'd remember the quote when I noticed myself fretting.  This would help me remember that I am making it all up when I plan the future, and then I'm believing my story and feeling the effects of it.  This application was helpful, but mostly when I had already began to regain my footing. During the height of my concern or worry, this application did not serve me beyond simply distracting me from my thinking for long enough for new/healthier thinking to come along as an option.  This is not nothing, but there is more.

There's a difference between application of an understanding, and implications.  Implications go beyond intellect to knowing.  For me, moving into implications of how I use my thinking, awareness and insights has meant a willingness to see it everywhere and in everyone.  This has been most evident and measurable in terms of how seriously I take my feelings of worry and panic when they hit.  Let me explain...

I am not by nature a worrier.  I don't usually find myself in a worried state automatically and tend to be fairly optimistic about the present and future.  However, I do have a kryptonite. It's become very apparent to me over the last month or two.   The thing that sends me straight into worry that is both automatic and intense is when my kids are not doing well physically.  It's scary to me & my thinking feels real so fast.  This is very clear to me because over the last month one of my kids has had a broken shoulder, the flu and head lice.   My other child got a severe earache that had him in the emergency room and urgent care with complications for a week. 

As hard as I tried, I could not think my way to a happy place for long.  I was faint, nauseated and not well.  Don't get me wrong, I stepped up and did everything my kids needed, but I also felt at times that I was barely hangin' on myself.  At one point...I think it was when I found out about the lice...I felt too exhausted to combat my worry.  Too exhausted to look into the future and gauge all of the jobs that were required and all of the things that could go wrong. 

Instead I just became willing to see the bigger picture.  It felt like this happened despite the state I was in.  As if some part of me led the way & this tired part of me just followed.  From here I could see how silly and consuming my worry was.  Because of what I understand about the Three Principles of Mind, Thought & Consciousness, there were implications for me.  I could not take my worrisome thinking seriously anymore.  It seemed so rudimentary and close-minded that for me to believe in it would be ridiculous.  I no longer felt I was trying to put my thinking into an understanding, but instead (& quite naturally) my understanding was allowing me to see the nature of my thinking. New thinking was suddenly full of gratitude and compassion for those who had more to worry about than I do.  New feelings of capability and calm washed over me.

This is what has helped me in a sustainable way as life continues to bring new opportunities to worry about my kids and their physical health.  This knowing about how life experience is created at each turn in the road has nothing to do with trying or recalling, but instead has to do with tuning in to the powerful source of well-being that we are.  At first it can feel like it requires a great leap of faith to listen to the direction of your own mind.  We can get used to listening to all the hardship we create, but when we believe less in the reality we've created, we automatically are open to where we really belong.  You just find yourself there with what you need to move forward. 

This following album insert seems to speak to this idea of where our thinking can take us, the wiser part of us that never goes anywhere during these times, and how time changes what we see:

"This record is about waiting for things, and boredom, and over analysis, and angst, and all that.  But it's also about bravery, about confidence, hatred and love.  I poured my brain and heart into this, and maybe I'll hate it in two years, because that's the nature of being my age, but for now, it's the most powerful thing I can give." ~ Lorde

My wish for you is that you use your imagination to create and experience life as you wish to...And when you create something that feels more like a nightmare, may you never loose sight of the bigger you who sees beyond whatever you're currently creating.