Saturday, December 24, 2011

Coming Unstuck

Being stuck is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Breaking free from this vicious cycle comes from the first two Stilletto Steps of awareness and acceptance.

If we have unrealistic expectations and can’t accept our personal circumstances, we’re sure to wind-up stuck. From this, resistance takes hold, poor habits are formed, and unskilled behaviors keep cycling through. It’s like the hamster on the wheel – he keeps on running but doesn’t get anywhere!
Freedom from being stuck comes from being aware. It allows us to take responsibility for the situation by accepting reality. It also provides the opportunity to institute skillful behavior and successfully make changes.

Many times in my life I’ve been angry because I expected things to be different than they were and that caused suffering.

What I learned is that acceptance allows me to see things accurately, without judgment. In doing so, I immediately release the pain associated with my resistance, opening me to alternatives.

Here’s how it works: my stress is reduced when I accept that I have no control over what others say, think or feel. It doesn’t mean that I agree, approve or believe it’s OK – it just means that it “is what it is.” I am aware and accept it.

As M. Kathleen Casey said, “Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.” When we recognize that pain comes from inside, not from outside, we can work with our mind to reduce it.

Each of us can get unstuck by living in the present moment. Becoming aware of our breath will help us do that, as will focusing on any routine activity (such as doing dishes).

When we bring our full attention to what we are doing, our minds don’t wander and we create peace in our lives everyday. Where you are stuck?

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