We are not in control, and must learn to surrender and let go of unhealthy desire and attachment. Insecurity and fear and perfectionism and resentment and worry and victimhood dominate us because of our constant need to control a situation or outcome. All we can do is make the best of what we have. Whatever happens or does not, we are okay. With or without the thing or person we want, we are simply okay in what currently is.
Jesus said as much. “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow.” Attachment to outcome is suffering. Clinging to what may or may not happen is suffering. These are the words I keep hearing: “You are okay…no matter what…no matter what is or is not.”
I am learning, so slowly, to let go of control. The more I attempt control, the more anxiety and anger I feel when things don’t go as planned, when they turn out differently than I wanted. I recognize and embrace reality—I do not need this or that thing or person to be content, happy, fulfilled. If I receive the thing or person, I receive it with joyful surprise and gratitude because I do not expect to get everything I want. If I do not receive it, well, I am already content with things as they are, and since I’m not trying to control an outcome, I’m already surrendered to my present and detached from my desires. Of course, healthy desire and longing and hope and wants and needs are good, but only when they are held loosely and when our happiness, joy, and contentment are not tied directly to them. If I am full, content, and grateful now—before receiving what I want or need or desire or long for—then whether or not anything changes, I am okay with what is or is not, what comes or does not.
Keep repeating this: “You are okay…I am okay…Whatever comes or happens or changes or does not…I am always okay.”
Slowly, you might feel something change internally. You might begin to hold everything a little more loosely. You might begin to surrender something or someone piece by piece. You might begin to recognize that where you are and what you have right now in this very moment is good enough, even beautiful. If or when the rest comes, you’ll be all the more joyful, surprised, and excited when you have already chosen gratitude for what is, in place of desire for what isn’t.
“It’s life that matters, nothing but life—the process of discovering, the everlasting and perpetual process, not the discovery itself, at all.” – Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Idiot
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