Being mindful is hard work. It’s not just about the ten minutes you’ve decided to meditate each day. That’s just the beginning. It’s like being a sculptor for your soul. You have to keep on chiseling at it, be methodical, be patient and keep reengaging with the process.
There are plenty of tools and techniques you can try. But as with all of the tools, you gotta keep at it, otherwise it’s like watching open heart surgery on YouTube. If you don’t practice something yourself, you’re not likely to learn.
Society (and advertisers, rooted in the capitalist set up) tells us we need to fit in. We know it’s not sustainable. We see depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues on the rise. Its easier to fit in. Easier to buy another object to pacify ourselves with. We are not taught any better when we grow up. The cogs are running smoothly only if we consume and numb ourselves. Which in time pulls us away from each other and away from ourselves.
The answer is most likely perseverance. Continuing with the uncomfortable. Letting yourself get bored. Spending time alone. Away from pacifiers. Learning how to be alone.
We are wired to be social creatures, yet we can’t fulfil our lives through others. We need to first work on understanding and loving ourselves without relying on our tribe. It’s counterintuitive. To survive we need others. To feel safe we need others. But we shouldn’t give others power over our happiness.
And we have to remind ourselves to pay attention, put in work and appreciate what’s already there.
Those loose thoughts are brought to you by three books I’ve recently read (and which at many angles contradict one another):
- Lea Babauta’s “The Little Book of Contentment”
- Brené Brown’s “Braving the Wilderness: The quest for true belonging and the courage to stand alone”
- Yuval Noah Harari’s “Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow “