When we run our lives from the states of fear and desire, we are either pushing things away or grasping for them. In between those two states is the middle ground where stillness and peace lives. In this moment, see if you can drop fear and desire and just land in the place of peace. Take some nice slow, long, deep breathes and allow your nervous system to let go into the moment. What do you notice? A sense of relief? Stay with it, because underneath relief is peace.
We all say we long for peace, yet we can’t seem to find it. And unconsciously we are driven by anxiety – fear of losing out, not getting enough, not being enough, someone taking something away from us, someone controlling us in a way we don’t want, not realizing our dreams and goals that we have set for ourselves, not feeling loved in the way we want to feel loved, fear of success, fear of failure, fear of looking bad in the eyes of someone that we hold dear, fear of humiliation, fear of ego driven behavior, fear of hurting someone, or fear of being hurt. What have I left out of this list? What would you add?
Unconsciously we are driven by desire – the desire to have something we think will transform our lives in some meaningful, fundamental way, to be in relationship with someone who we have projected all of our best qualities onto and made them out to be the picture of perfection, to live a different life than the one we have, rejecting what the truth is of who, what and where we are now. What have I left out of this list? What would you add?
There is often another unconscious fear, and that is of being in the sweet spot of stillness and peace. We have come to believe that if we are not productive every minute of the day, we are not useful, valuable, or worth. Will we become a couch potato forever?
Maybe we will be a couch potato for a minute, day, or week, while we catch our breath from all our activities, but what arises after that is an internal motivation to do what we really want to do, what our heart is calling us to do in that particular moment, with aliveness and joy, instead of dread and obligation. When we really look at our fears and desires – especially the ones hidden from us in our unconscious – and shine the light of day on them, we can make choices as to whether we want these fears and desires to continue running our lives. We can decide if we want to spend more of our precious time living in the sweet spot of stillness and peace.
This beautiful moth magically showed up one evening last summer as two good friends and I sat around a campfire in my yard, digesting a day of gathering with more friends. I’ve seen lots of animals around my home, but never a moth of this size – five or six inches in wingspan. We were awestruck as we watched it dance in the smoke that arose from the fire. What was the message it was bringing to us, we pondered. Perhaps, give yourself over to the light? Dance in the light, the smoke, whatever is here for you. It’s all welcome, just dance.
The next morning, to my surprise, the moth was sitting on my back porch, and that’s when I took this picture. Once again, what was it trying to communicate? Maybe that we are one with each other? Or maybe that we just to have contact? Letting go of fear and desire allows us to be present in stillness and peace, available to take in the magic of whatever shows up in the present of this wonderful moment that is our life.
Diane Ingram, PCC, is a Coach, Coach Trainer, Workshop Facilitator, and Speaker for Personal and Professional Development. She is a regular contributor to Pawling Public Radio and the author of five books. To learn more, visit DianeIngram.com online.