Stop trying so hard
“The next message you need
is always right where you are.”
— Ram Dass
Meditation is where you get out of incessant trying. There is a part of us that is constantly trying. Trying to accomplish something. Trying to do this. Trying to do that. It’s exhausting.
Meditation is about getting into a state of allowing where you’re not pushing against anything. We have very strong desires for things to be a certain way. But the only thing we really have control over is what we put our attention on, what we focus on.
Meditation, quieting the mind, positions us to make choices about where we want to put our attention, instead of just being pulled from one situation to the next and reacting. Meditation helps people get into a state of awareness. As your awareness increases, you have access to understanding. But the first level is letting go of resistance, which is the trying to achieve this and that.
You may have heard of people who have huge insights or breakthroughs when they sleep, or when they’re just taking a walk in the park, or playing with their kids. A scientist may have been working on a project for years and all of a sudden, when he’s sleeping or doing some mundane task, the crucial idea comes to him. For me, insights usually come when I’m in the shower, or driving alone in the car, or when I first wake up in the morning – when I’m just in that transitional state before my conscious mind kicks in. The insights – the answers to a problem or question I have – come then because there’s nothing blocking them. I’m not trying. There’s no resistance. There’s nothing in the way of receiving.
Meditation can take you into that state of allowing, precious freedom from effort and trying. What a relief!