Continuing with the post I started last week, I said at that time that the more I study and understand the nature of life and business, the more I become convinced that the “formula” for having an amazing life and a truly successful business is really quite simple: Totally release the past, let go of all attachments and judgments, forgive everyone for everything, including yourself, be grateful for everything, and focus only on being peaceful. Pretty simple, wouldn’t you agree?
But the problem is obvious: hardly any of us do any of those things. Wouldn’t you agree with that too? So let’s continue to dig into this a bit deeper so you can understand why this is a sure-fire formula for happiness and success and why it seems so difficult to implement.
Let go of all attachments!
First, what do I mean by “attachments?” Simply put, we want life to be the way we want life to be, we want people to be the way we want them to be, we want circumstances to be the way we want them to be, etc. So far, no problem. The problem arises when not only do we want things and people to be the way we want them to be, we are determined that they be that way, and our very existence, our happiness and our joy are all wrapped up in whether or not they are the way we want them to be. This is what I mean by attachments.
Now you might, at first, think that you don’t feel that strongly about anything or anybody. If you think that, you’re being naïve. People generally do not look carefully enough at how they approach life to see how much they are attached to life being the way they want it to be. Think about it. Don’t you really care a lot about how your business is, how your spouse and children are, how your employees or co-workers are, how successful you are, how much money you make, how much money you have in the bank, how your sales go, what others think about you, etc.? I could go on and on. Don’t you really care about a lot of things and people and spend time and energy trying to have them be the way you want them to be?
Now you might say: what’s wrong with caring about things like that? There’s nothing wrong with caring, as long as you care in a loving way. But when you’re attached and things have to be a certain way, you pretty much guarantee you will never be happy and I hope that’s obvious. If it isn’t, just realize that things and people will never be the way you want them to be, even if you don’t realize that, and when you put your happiness and peace of mind at stake in attempting to overcome that, your happiness and peace go out the window. The result is that the possibility of having an amazing life and a truly successful business go out the window too.
Is there a solution? Surely. Let go of your attachments. Let life and people and circumstances just be the way they are and just the way they are not. Learn to practice the serenity prayer: God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
If there are people or circumstances in your life or business that are not the way you would like them to be and you can develop a plan to change them or it, go for it. Just give up your need to be successful. Do what you can and if it works, great. If not, let it go. If you can see that you can’t make a difference with whatever isn’t the way you want it to be, learn to accept it/them just the way it/they are.
Here’s the best part: those are the only two choices. Change it or leave it be. Being unwilling to do either and complaining about them or it is not an acceptable option. Turning yourself into a victim is also not an option. Blaming others is another unacceptable option. You’re in charge of your own experience. Take responsibility for it and choose wisely. More next week.