"Your daily life is your temple and your religion. Whenever you enter into it take with you your all." -- Kahlil Gibran
Do you feel inadequate? Are you primed to think you will never have or be enough? Then you are caught in the trap of wanting more. If only I had more -- more friends or time or success, then I would be happy and content.
It's a painful story we spin that never leads to true satisfaction.
Well, I'll let you in on a little secret: more is highly overrated. You may thinkyou need more, but what actually brings you peace is less. Consider these five lovely reasons to celebrate the power of less. Then start experimenting in the moments of your precious life.
Maybe you'll find that less has been just what you've wanted all along.
1. Less drama, more simplicity.
If you spend your time caught in dramas about yourself and other people, it's a guarantee you won't be happy. Dramas are stories full of judgment about what's wrong and what shouldn't be happening. And if you focus on them in your thoughts and conversation, it's impossible to feel calm and peaceful.
Letting go of drama invites you to make new choices. Instead of gossiping about someone, choose a more uplifting topic. And if your thoughts swirl about your own exaggerated story lines, shift to seeing what is good, right, and working in your life.
Engage less with drama, and savor the simple joys that are all around you.
2. Less doing, more enjoyment.
Most of us are moving way too fast. With the dreaded FOMO (fear of missing out) nipping at our heals, we frantically over-schedule so we never have time to stop and be.
Here's the problem. If you're always busy, you're propelled into the future. You're focused on accomplishing the next thing, while you miss out on enjoying what is here and available right now.
And what is here? The simple delight of a breath of fresh air, a heart-to-heart moment of connection, the space to rest from all the doing. Everything is fresh and alive -- in the now!
Less activity, and all the agitation that goes with it, opens the possibility for enjoying yourself so much more.
See what happens when you make the choice to slow down and do less. Enjoyment is right here, waiting for you.
3. Less mindlessness, more presence.
Sleepwalking through your life, with your mind in a fog, leaves you forever stuck in habits that don't serve you. These habits might be things you do, such as overeating, dulling yourself with too many substances, incessantly checking email.
Or they might be habitual ways of thinking -- that you're a victim, unable to reach beyond your fears, never good enough.
Presence is the medicine that sheds light on these habits so you can begin to make different choices. You get to know how you think -- and you can shift your attention away from these stressful thoughts. You recognize the urge to engage in a habit -- and you feel it rather than act on it. This is freedom.
Presence wakes you up to your life. You can choose mindlessness and bumble through, or you can be consciously aware and start truly living. Be present, and let your life unfold effortlessly with wisdom, intelligence, and compassion.
4. Less fear, more love.
When it comes to what drives you, you have two choices -- fear or love. Fear is limiting and separates you from your life. You know it's in charge when you feel closed, dissatisfied, or frustrated.
Fear feeds a false story that is loaded with negativity. For the most part, it is a conditioned response that makes you think you are a fraction of your true magnificence.
How to experience less fear and more love? See fear for what it is -- a distorted pattern of thoughts and some fluttery physical sensations. Give these no importance whatsoever, and tap into the expansive, creative parts of you that have been waiting for your attention.
And when you do, what is revealed? You come from a place that is already fulfilled, completely at peace, and infinitely open-hearted. And it infuses every moment of your beautiful life.
5. Less mental noise, more peace.
If our attention is drawn out into the world, it's no surprise that our minds are noisy. There is so much going on! And we are drawn into judging it, categorizing it, and trying to make sense of all the stimulation.
But don't you find it completely exhausting? How do you find peace in the middle of the tsunami of thinking?
Trying to stop thoughts is a losing battle. Why? Because it's impossible. Instead, what is called for is a new relationship with thinking. And that involves disengaging your attention from all the mental chatter.
It may sound revolutionary, but just because thoughts are present doesn't mean you need to be interested in them. Try losing interest in them. Be done with the repetitive, annoying ones that add nothing to your life. Simply turn your attention away from them.
Without the mental noise filling your awareness, you will make an important discovery. Peace is here. Presence is possible. You can be fully alive in your awesome life.
Are you ready to celebrate the power of less?
Follow Gail Brenner, Ph.D. on Twitter: www.twitter.com/GBGailBrenner