One of the main ways we create struggles with others–and within ourselves–is to decide, as Katie Hendricks says, we are having the wrong experience. “If you had looked at the traffic report, we wouldn’t be stuck in this jam!” “I should have checked my bank statement, so I wouldn’t have bounced those checks.” “If only I’d listened to my mother, I wouldn’t be married to this guy!”
While learning from experience is certainly the best teacher, this constant background buzz of thoughts about how what is happening should be different (“If only it weren’t raining…” “See, I knew I should never have trusted you!”) takes us out of the present moment. It also exists in a world where it really is possible to control the future. If we only think about it long enough, or plan out the details well enough, or talk to enough people/do enough market research/gather enough data, we’ll have the experience we’d hoped and dreamed about. And planned.
This mindset of predict and control also implies that it is we, ourselves, who are in the driver seat. Our success is due to our determination or good planning; our failures occur because we weren’t good/strong/smart/aware/open/(fill in the blank here) enough. Every step that we take is wrought with the pressure of doing it right.
So, what’s wrong with that? Isn’t that how we are taught to live, to take responsibility for our lives’ successes or failures?
The problem is: as long as we are focused on what we’re doing right or wrong, well or badly, we’re missing the life we have. And even more, we don’t see a vital piece of the picture of how creation actually occurs. And that is: rather than being in charge of our lives, we’re actually simply co-creating them with the true master of creation: the universe.