In one of my first posts I admitted to an obsession with searching for the next big thing. I’m convinced that once I find the thing my life will change so profoundly that it will redefine my very existence. A new king-sized mattress came close. Bio-identical hormones came closer. But there’s always an intangible something still missing that I can’t quite put my finger on …. so, I keep looking.
For way too many years I’ve been addicted to anything and everything self-help. A definite off-shoot of the thing. With unwavering certainty, I know that the next book, the next tape series, the next DVD, the next Omega workshop or Brother Dyer live appearance – will be the thing that finally leads to my personal satori. Even my blog partner, Skye, half-jokingly talks about the need for an intervention and 12-step program. Hmmmm.
I’ve always thought that reading self-help books before falling asleep was the way to go – let the sub-conscious mull it over, construct an action plan and all that. So the other night after an hour of reading the latest and greatest about becoming a new and improved, excuse-free me – there was no way I could fall asleep. I couldn’t sleep because my mind was frantically trying to assimilate, organize, and somehow not forget what I had just read – the tips, the quotes, the secrets, the exercises, the 4 main categories with the 14 essential bullet points … I was an information-overload mess.
At any given moment I’m trying to be compassionate, feel gratitude, be in the now, focus my attention, let go of judgment, watch my breathing, work through my fear, let go of attachment, feel love toward everyone and everything,visualize, keep my ego in check, lose my self-importance, meditate, find my life’s purpose, take responsibility, manifest my destiny, stay balanced, get in touch with my higher self, and, oh yeah, remember that visualization without feeling doesn’t count – all done in a blissful state of joy, while understanding that it’s nothing but a universal, holographic dream anyway.
I’m supposed to keep all these balls in the air every waking moment, yet remain relaxed and detached? I have an in-box of motivation quotes dating back to the early 80s that I can’t bear to delete, reams of inspiring quotes I’ll never read again, every personal transformation guru’s website bookmarked in “my favorites” … this is insane. My obsession with enlightenment is seriously stressing me out.
So that’s it, you’re all going to have to go on the vision quest without me. I need a break. In the true spirit of detachment, I’m hitting the spiritual pause button. I’m going back to reading Stephen King and Architectural Digest, cancelling every emailed motivational quote of the day, deleting Amazon’s s self-help book suggestion of the week, and taking myself off of Oprah’s “Live Your Best Life” mailing list.
I no longer want to live my best life. Right now, I just want to live.