A little while before I met my boyfriend (or rather, re-met, as we first met each other in 7th grade... but that's a whole other story), I got to a very interesting and surprising place. A place of surrender, which became a place of power. To set the scene, I was 33, and just out of another eight-monther that ended like the others -- we got along, we had fun, we had good physical chemistry... but... there was just no depth, no forward movement. And while I felt empowered that I chose to move on and wouldn't just let myself "settle," still, I was quite devastated and confused.
Like many women, I always thought that I would have found the long-term "one" by then. At that point, I was over the dating for sport thing and really wanted a partner to share my life with, to grow with, to share my love with... and I always thought I'd be a person who would have that. So I then spent months of being down and frustrated that I was still without my "one," spent bouts of time being mad at God as I watched all my friends so easily fall in love (I know, I know, appearances can be deceiving and we never know what goes on behind closed doors. But I was having a pity party for myself, at that point, okay?). Why was it SO easy for everyone else?! I was doing all the "work" on myself that all those self-help and dating advice things said to do... so where was he?!
But then a wave of something -- I don't know, call it wisdom, call it the universe speaking to me, call it my inner voice, or just call me crazy -- but something hit me flat out in the face one day and changed everything. I had this revelation: Really, who was I to think I knew better than my "life plan and destiny," or God, or the "universe" (take your spiritual pick)? I honestly thought I would be a person to have a soulmate-type marriage, to have a long-term love of my life partner... but, hey, that may just not be the plan for me. I may not be meant to be married or have that kind of long-term romantic love. It surprised me... but if that's what the greater "plan" was for me, then who was I to argue or be upset? In a way, it was a relief; if I was meant to go through this life single, then cool. I can own that and move forward. It gave me an out. I could stop worrying about it, because it wasn't supposed to happen anyway.
Of course, as all love stories go, we're told the moment we stop looking for it or don't want it is when it happens. So, yeah, that's what happened to me. I was really happy and fulfilled in my life, exactly as it was... I was single, owned it, and empowered to be it. Then, my boyfriend just "showed up" very soon after. I wasn't expecting it. In fact, I didn't even think he was hitting on me... the first time we went out, I didn't even know it was a date. And then it all just flowed totally organically and pressure-free. Because I had surrendered.
When we want anything badly -- a job, a relationship, money, a stroke of creative genius, etc. -- it creates an air of desperation. And this energy of desperation acts like a rubber wall and a heavy coat of armor -- what you want can't get to you... in fact, in the case of the rubber wall analogy, the more desperate you are, the more it bounces farther and farther away from you. When we become obsessed with something we are so sure we're meant to have, we literally stop living our lives and stop being aware of the present moment, because all we're thinking about is why we don't have that thing/person we want, why it's SO unfair that we don't, and so forth.
Which brings me to the present. Recently, I started having full-on panic worry meltdowns about my financial situation and career, beating myself up for not being farther along, feeling like a failure. I was having those familiar bouts of anger and blame... why God, why!? And then, the realization of surrender again washed over me: I have exactly what the universe thinks I need to do what I need to do right now. That doesn't mean I'm going to stop working hard or setting goals. It just means I can stop beating myself up for not being in the place I think I'm supposed to be... because maybe, just maybe, my "plan" knows better than I do. Maybe, just maybe, right in this moment I actually am exactly where I'm meant to be, with exactly what I'm supposed to have.
Next time you find yourself in the obsessive desperation of wanting, try to chill out and just surrender to where you are... because maybe, just maybe, there's actually something better coming to you. You just have to drop the desperation to allow it to come in.
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