I was talking with a long term client the other day, and was discussing his desire to lose twenty pounds. When I asked what his weight currently was his response floored me!
"Oh, I won't get on a scale so I really don't know!"
This raised a whole new arena of questions due to the conflicts inherent to the specific situation. Having a specific goal to lose twenty pounds while refusing to acknowledge ones current weight is self defeating from the word go, but that is not even the part that was most important to address.
A large part of what I try to help people to achieve is centered around Awareness. Awareness of and presence in The Now. Living a life of presence in this moment, not looking forward or backward. Eschewing all of the folderol that accrues when we live our lives to be happy/content/relaxed "As Soon As..."
To do this in any full sense means also being aware of what the current moment is. And being aware of it means also accepting what is. To it's fullest extent this includes being at peace with what is. That may seem a bit much to expect to many people with serious challenges in their life, but it is achievable for all...
My client wanted to change his situation without really knowing what his situation was. Anybody see a problem here? If you cannot accept your situation (what is) then you have no real hope of changing it. In actuality, willful ignorance of a situation he didn't like was keeping him from not just changing the situation but also from real peace and joy right now!
How so? Well let's consider what happened next!
I trotted out my faithful bathroom scale and literally forced him onto it. The result? He weighed more than he hoped but less than he feared. He was also only 18 pounds from his goal wieght. Having become aware of his actual current weight, he was able to stop the inner stammering dialog that happened every time someone inquired about his weight, whether that was his wife, a friend or even just himself...
So one less thing had the ability to take him out of the present moment and toss him back out of Awareness of The Now!
The importance of this can not be overstated. Every time we overcome one of these issues and take away that ability we gain greater understanding and skills that will allow us to maintain a life of Awareness and Connection with the Dynamic Energy of the Universe and it's Creator.
Awareness then leads to Acceptance as we acknowledge the reality of a situation. This is key to our accomplishing any desired change in that situation we may want. But how do we come to be at peace with a situation that we are at core unhappy about.
All situations fall under one of three categories.
When faced with something that falls in category one, we can legitimately give ourselves a pass. Accepting that the situation was not of our making doesn't always mean there is nothing we can do to change things. So if we allow for things that we had no control over, but take what action is available now we have the perfect basis to be at peace with what is...
Categories 2 and 3 are closely related, because if we had any culpability at all in the actuality of What Is, many people just can't seem to let themselves off the hook! This is a forgiveness issue, and will also usually be affecting people's ability to offer forgiveness to others. This will further hinder the achievement of joy and peaceful living in Awareness of The Now.
Let's face it, most things fall into these two categories as we can almost always affect a situation by our actions. With whatever we are faced with that we are not pleased with, we either did not take action, or our actions were not effective.
The first step to overcoming negative feelings about this aspect of What Is consists of meditating on that old NLP affirmation: Everyone is doing the best they can with the resources available to them.
This includes each and every one of us. I challenge anyone to really meditate on this and not come away being more at peace with What Is; In The Now.
Whatever we have or have not done that added to our current predicament occurred while we were faced with other complex situations. By no act of will can we separate out the influences of those past moments in time. To even go back and try is to take ourselves our of the present moment. Acknowledge this, and you are most of the way to a peaceful acceptance of your own culpability and present situation.
Am I saying that retrospection is always a bad thing? That we should never try to learn from our past mistakes and errors of omission? Absolutely not, but I am saying that to do so in even a slightly obsessive way is not only counterproductive but dangerous, and toxic to our Awareness and Presence in The Now.
Be Aware of all aspects of your situation without denial or obfuscation. Accept whatever your own role is in any aspect that is not to your liking, and forgive yourself. Acknowledge that you were "Doing the best you could with the resources available to you."
This will allow you to accept what is openly and take appropriate action while still enjoying a peaceful existence in the present moment at all times.