Blog post after the jump
The one thing that has made a big difference for me on this journey is permitting myself not to make everything into a problem that has to be solved.
A majority of us assume that there are set things and situations in life that are by definition “a problem.”
Meaning that we have to spend every waking hour doing all we can to avoid ever having to experience them.
But when we constantly try to “avoid” things, that’s where the problem is.
It’s not the potential of unfavourable things occurring that is the problem, it’s the constant juggling act of trying to “avoid” them that is.
Our definition of a problem is the thing causes unrest.
The truth is,
When something looks like a problem, it’s because there’s a way we want things to be and we assume or perceive that something is standing in the way of that.
For problems to exist, it means we believe something is standing in the way of how we want things to be.
And most often, we assume that thing that stands in our way is something outside of us.
It could be someone’s attitude, a shortage of a seemingly essential resource like time or money or even a missing piece of critical information.
Here’s the thing:
Whilst it’s true, that some of the blocks to getting what we want exists out in the world, a majority of problems come from our thinking.
Stay with me because this isn’t some clever “positive thinking” reframe that I’m trying to put on you.
For practical purposes, the grass is just grass, your boss’ attitude is your boss’ attitude, the amount of money in your bank account is what it is.
These are what I like to call logistics.
They don’t say or mean anything about you; instead, they are simple factors – some changeable and some not, that we have to take into account to create the things we want.
Logistics become problems only and always in the way we permit ourselves to see them.
In my experience, there are only two issues in the way we see logistics that leads us to create problems in our world.
These issues are:
- We misunderstand how our system os thoughts and feelings work.
- And we also massively underestimate the creative potential of our mind.
So let’s look at each of these issues.
If you’ve been around me long enough you’ll know that I keep going on about this.
What creates our feelings from moment to moment is THOUGHT.
We live in the feeling of our thinking.
But because “thought” is largely invisible, we tend to look for things outside of us to attribute our feelings.
This innocent misunderstanding is what is at the heart of a majority of the problems we have in our lives.
Because we think our happiness will come from getting what we want, we chase that thing at the cost of everything else; our relationships, our health, and our spiritual well-being.
And when we get what we want and we’re still not happy, so we assume the problem is that we’re still not doing enough.
So, we push even harder and get even further away from the experience of happiness we want.
Similarly, because we think that our sadness comes from being alone, we make desperate and sometimes questionable choices about who to spend our lives with.
Then, we think our anger and frustration is coming from our new partner, so we try to change them or swap them out with a different partner instead of looking to see what might change in our thinking.
Also, If we think that our fear is linked to certain specific life situations, we do everything we can to avoid and/or protect ourselves from those circumstances or “problems.”
We begin to value every thought that passes through us.
“Negative” and “positive” thoughts simply become signals that tell us that state of our mind at any given moment; and how trustworthy our thinking is at each moment.
And because we’re no longer scared of feeling all feelings, life is no longer scary.
We don’t try so hard to try to shape life and fit it to the pictures passing through our mind.
So we relax and begin to enjoy ourselves more and as a result, we begin to experience more our natural creativity and wellbeing.
This leads us to our second issue:
In previous blog posts and podcast episodes, I’ve spoken about the need to “make things happen” as opposed to “allowing” them to flow.
If you missed it, you can read one of those conversations here: The art of allowing
There are only 2 reasons why you would push to “make things happen” rather than let things flow.
- The first is that you feel so much pressure and stress that pushing hard to move forward just seems like a good idea to relieve that pressure.
- The second reason is that you don’t believe in the infinite potential of the universe and yourself.
Yet, when you look back at your life, how many of the things you love and value came from purely pushing as hard as you can?
And how many came through when you trusted yourself and allowed things to happen?
If you’ve ever had the feeling of having things coming “through you” rather than “from you”, you’ll know what the unlimted creative potential feels like.
When you’re working with the unlimited creative potential, 9 times out of 10, you’ll always be surprised with things coming through even as you hold on to your sense of certainty that they will come.
We experience it as inspiration, or “flow” or “being in the zone”. During these moments, time slows down, life becomes less complex and everything seems to have a solution.
But because we don’t believe that this is a natural part of us we see them only as rare moments.
And this means that we fall back more often to try to make things happen. This can become a real problem in the long run.
Well, are there areas of your life where you are either stuck or making the best of what seems like a choice between bad, not so bad, and much, much worse?
You do this even while the unlimited creative potential of your mind sits quietly in the background waiting for you to look in its direction for new possibilities you haven’t even considered.
How about if you trust in the knowledge that you will always be inspired at the moment when you need to be?
If this were the norm, will you still feel the need to “make things happen”?
As we end this conversation, I’m going to take us back full circle to talk about logistics and problems.
Knowing what you now know, where are you transitioning your logistics into daily life problems?
Your boss’ attitude is just what it is. The amount of money in your bank account or lack of it is what it is.
You can choose to make it a logistical issue on the road to achieving what you want.
OR you can choose to transition it into a “problem” with all the heightened sense of feelings attached to that.
Either way, the event will remain the same.
It won’t change just because you feel more intense emotions and feelings around it.
Are you going to spend all your time coming up with ideas of how to avoid it or are you going to permit yourself to show up and respond at the moment to whatever occurs?
If you do transition that logistical issue into a problem, are you taking your thought/feeling system into account as well as your infinite creative potential in getting solutions?
Nothing is set in stone.
Everything is fluid.
You can change your definition of a “problem” at any given moment.
Get quiet. Stop trying to predict the future to figure it all out in your head. Let your mind have the space to be receptive. Most of all, enjoy the ride.
Unexpected events are nothing to be afraid of. You always have everything you need to stir your ship back on course as quickly as possible …but only if you allow it to happen.
I’m Elizabeth Archibong. A Nigerian girl obsessed setting the rules on fire to create life and results from a place of ease and a path of least resistance. I teach people how to see themselves more simply and accurately. So that they can create and get more of the things that they want.