The Perfection Process: Doing vs. Non-Doing
When I was a school child, I lived for Fridays and hated Mondays. A natural introvert, I did not like big groups of people and lots of commotion. I lived sitting quietly in class and learning, but not all of the stuff surrounding that like cafeteria lunches and P.E. or playground time. Hence, I lived for the weekend when I could have quiet time in the woods and take long walks or make music at home alone. From that pattern came what I like to call my personally created “Arrival Process.”
My Striving/Arrival Process looked like this: When I make it past this test, I will be happy. When I finish this paper, I will be happy. When this class is over, I will be happy. When we get to Friday, I will be happy. When winter break comes, I will be happy. When spring comes, I will be happy. When I graduate high school, I will be happy. When I get married, I will be happy. When I have my first house, I will be happy. When this child is age 3,7,16, etc. I will be happy.
Do you see the pattern?
Was I ever permanently happy upon arriving at that new destination?
Because happiness is not in the arrival, it’s in the process.
What if we decide that there will be no more striving to arrive in life? What if we simply engage in a consistent, compassionate, Creation-centered process of change?
Life could then become a simple, continual process. We notice, do, self-correct, forgive & change, do, notice and try again. It would be a ‘perfection process,’ if you will, growing from grace to grace until we get back home to our Creator Parents.
How does that feel in your heart?
For me, changing from ‘striving to arrive’ to the ‘perfection process’ felt like a release. Striving to arrive is hard and requires a lot of push energy. It felt good to let that go. But then things felt quite scary and new. I became “scited” once again in my life.
I have been ‘scited’ quite frequently in the past several years. It’s a new and very good feeling. Have you ever noticed how the feeling of anticipation and the feeling of anxiety feel very similar in your body? Try it. You can choose what to name those physical feelings you have created with your thoughts. ‘Scited, for me, feels like a hybrid of anxious and happy anticipation. What’s it like for you?
Let’s talk a second about the difference between presence and pushing for progress. All this talk about being present and calm makes me wonder if those people are making any real progress at all. Can you really progress while striving to be present and accepting? Isn’t progression based on striving?
In our Unit 10 book, The Power of Stillness, the assertion is made that there is nothing that says the pursuit of profound change and the pathway of progress cannot also be experienced as compassionate, spacious, grace-filled, and shot through with love…in other words, mindful presence. Growth is an inescapable part of a mindful life. I believe it is just as our Creator intends it. What do you believe? Are you willing to release the push and trust that presence will propel you into the person you are intended to be?
Do you have a part that believes that unless your change is fueled by a mindset of criticism, people pleasing, and frantic pressure, you won’t do anything? Maybe that part needs a little compassion and reassurance that love and the grace of God will make her much happier in her pursuit of life goals and further them and her personal progression effortlessly as well. Perhaps she needs some inner imagery practice to build trust.
It’s all about trusting, allowing, and being present, backwards though that may seem. This week let’s practice communing and cleaving with our Creator and experiment as we stop striving and instead settle into compassionate Creator-centered consistent Change. Try it- just for a week, try to be fully present instead of striving. Let me know what happens. Love yourself forward instead of beating yourself up. How does that play out in your life? What new truths did you learn? Will you tweak it and try again next week? Let’s practice together.