You only lose what you cling to.
I don’t know about you, but I’m finding myself clinging on too tightly lately and working to loosen my grip on a few things…summer seems to be flying by and I’m navigating empty nest syndrome, and the looming loss of aging parents. The Buddha teaches us about impermanence (Anitya) – the fact that everything changes and nothing is permanent. Our thoughts, emotions, circumstances, relationships, surroundings, and physical bodies are changing shape continuously…whether we like it or not. Most of us are craving more peace and calm in our everyday lives and, while we cannot control the external factors unfolding around us, we can learn to manage what goes on internally. How we think, feel and respond to the changes makes all the difference in how we experience things. We’ve all heard it said that “happiness is an inside job”. When I reflect on this simple truth, I am reminded to return to a place of gratitude for each moment. However, being and staying mindful takes practice and some days go better than others. According to Buddhist teachings, attachment is the root of most suffering, which explains why this concept of impermanence is so difficult for us to grasp. I am coming to understand the meaning of compassionate detachment and that letting go does not mean we abandon a person, a dream or an outcome. Letting go simply means we do not define who we are by our success or failure in the attainment of goals or by the state of our relationships. I am learning, evolving, and warming up to this idea that everything will continue to shift whether I cling onto it or not. So now, when I start to feel myself gripping on, I stop and simply notice what is. I rely on my toolbox of coping mechanisms to keep me in the present moment like conscious deep belly breathing, meditation, yoga and gratitude journaling. I am blessed to own a wellness center dedicated to growth and healing.
Do you ever contemplate what the future holds and how you will feel once it gets here? One thing is certain. The world will never look or feel the same as it does right now. The sun will rise and set again and again but each of us, as we are today, will continue to change and evolve and show up differently.
High Vibes + Grateful Heart. XO, Jenn