Amanda Manning, LPC, LMHC, RYT (200)
“It is better to live your own destiny imperfectly than to live an imitation of somebody else’s life with perfection.” (Bhagavad Gita, 3.35)
I want you take a moment and read that quote from one of the oldest spiritual texts known to man a few times, until you really grasp it and feel it. I am a yoga teacher and a mental health therapist, and I love to combine the two because I feel both are important to understanding why we might be feeling stuck, inert, flat, unfulfilled.
What I think most of us are doing is trying to reach goals that are beyond our reach. I’m not saying that we aren’t good enough to reach them, but that the goals we are reaching for aren’t actually our goals. They are the goals of our mothers, friends, partners, social media “influencers”, etc. We will truly get what we want out of life when we recognize that for the most part we already have it.
The next step is to identify what we really, truly want. Our heartfelt desire.
In the Art of Happiness, Dr. Howard C. Cutler reviews several discussions he had with the Dalai Lama on happiness. Dr. Cutler outlines several research studies about happiness…and how to be happy…and why it’s important to be happy… He says the Dalai Lama stated something like that in order to be happy we essentially have to identify that which makes us happy and follow that and then identify that which causes suffering and get rid of that.
And at first I was like WOW. PROFOUND! This is life changing stuff. And then after closer inspection I was like…wait. That’s it? Do the things we like and get rid of the things we don’t?
And yet. We don’t do that.
We don’t make space for the things that we truly, truly need in our life.
So shopping makes you happy? Does it? It is exciting to twirl in that new dress or receive that new package or put those new things on the shelf, right? Such a thrill in the search and finding of the perfect thing. The question is then, is that bringing you happiness or pleasure?
This is the trick that we have to break down further.
Just because something brings you pleasure doesn’t mean it’s making you happy. Sunday funday, any