The Whole Operation
Central to health is an appreciation of the capability of the mind to initiate stress when left to operate freely. As we mature and run up against life’s challenges, we have the possibility of creating a closer relationship with our perceptions and thoughts. And in doing so, we can begin to have insight into what the whole operation is running on. In terms of health, these insights can alter our actions, our thoughts and ultimately the motivations we choose to act upon. In doing so, patterns of reaction that perpetuate stress get unhinged, we step back from our inner focused needs and we are inspired to continue questioning the self that we tend to hold onto with youthful vigor.
Opening up to the life around us
There is a price to pay for being overly self-focused – namely a disconnect from others. In fact, there is not much room for others when our needs and expectations are driving us forward. We may feel entitled to this experience, but nonetheless, we suffer from the stress that comes from maintaining all that we’ve invested in. And yet, at times it can seem that our self-focused desires come without a price. But that simply isn’t true. We experience a substantial amount of fear, vulnerability or lurking dissatisfaction. The motivation to question things might only come when we feel dissatisfied enough with our neurotic worries. And when we can be honest about how long they have been there, driving us away from others. And this is good, because we are presented with an opportunity that can encourage us to let go of our version of life and open back up to the life around us.
Shaping our experience
We are implicated in shaping our experience of life and in our well being. If we are not attentive to this, we might unknowingly be shaping our experience in unskillful ways. As an initial and ongoing personal practice, taking the time to attend to what is arising in our heart and mind, allows a direct view into this process. Looking at the areas in our life where we are reactive, shut down, or repeatedly lost in thought, can form the basis of this process, and allows a knowing of what we are doing in relation to this shaping. From this, we can more naturally bend towards actions that truly lead to our well being, and the well being of others.