Self-sabotage is a curious and insidious thing. It steals away the prospects of success … little by little we reject the possibility of change, of getting ‘somewhere’ (no matter where that place may be), or making progress towards our goals (whatever they may be, and however we might define ‘progress’). And so it is with this blog. Work got busy. I started making excuses. Too busy to write, too busy to create, too busy to meditate, too busy full stop. This is a familiar cycle ~ it’s the nature of the beast in my line of work, whereby the treadmill seems to get faster and steeper just as my resources are waning and tiredness has seeped into my bones.
So what’s the answer?
Perspective! I may not make time every day to meditate formally on a cushion but I can make time every single day to look up at the sky, to pull up from the minutiae of my life and the ‘stresses’ that have sucked in my attention, to literally look around and pull a wider focus than my tired mind normally allows. Watching the sky, and especially the clouds, has become a habit of mine.
Clouds can tell us so much – the analogy of the cloud/sky and thoughts/mind spoken of by Lama Yeshe is so instructive. We can look up at seemingly solid clouds, but if we sit with them watching silently and patiently we see that even the most ‘solid’ clouds have movement and contain the potential for transformation. Something that appears so solid and yet is transient gives us a living metaphor for understanding our own minds. Taking time to literally look up, then, gives me the opportunity to reconnect with this teaching every single day. I can see that the stresses of this week, day, hour, minute, are fleeting and they too will pass. I may need to remind myself again and again, but once grasped the lesson is never lost. So, I’m not giving up, but I am looking up ~ more and more; and each time I do so the sense of perspective gained allows me to breathe that bit deeper.