Giving Up the Story About How Your Life Is Going
Have you noticed how much your mind thinks about how your life is going? It's always checking to see how things line up with the way it wants your life to look. The funny thing is that life hardly ever measures up with how the story is supposed to go because it's a setup—even when life is good, something isn't good enough. Life doesn't line up with your stories, not because life is bad or you are doing something wrong, but because life will never line up with the stories/desires the ego has, not completely anyway. The egoic mind has desires that are destined to not be fulfilled. Meanwhile, life is fulfilling in all sorts of other ways.
Where would you be without this story about what you want and when you will get it? Does this story make your life go better? Does this story make you happier? How can a story, which comes from the egoic mind, which isn't wise, make your life go better or make you happier? The ego knows nothing about true happiness. Listening to it, only takes us out of real life, which is unfolding beautifully according to a plan we are part of. Life is happening, and it's happening as it needs to. We operate within life as it is unfolding, we act upon it, but we don't control it, nor do we know what is best for us or those around us.
We don't have a grasp of the bigger picture—no one does. We don't get to know what life will be like, where it is going, why it is the way it is. There is so much we don't know and aren't in control of. Why pretend we are or can be in control? That is what the ego does—it pretends that it can make life be the way it wants it to be. But no one has succeeded at that yet. Sometimes life fulfills a desire, but more often it doesn't—and it has its own timing even when it does.
The ego tells a story about life—it's going well or not, according to its plan. However, the ego's plan is rarely in alignment with the greater Plan, so what good is the ego's plan? Not much good at all. So why do we pay attention to the ego's plan? Because it's in our own mind. That's pretty convincing, isn't it? Our plan is our plan. If it were someone else's plan we wouldn't believe it so easily, but we believe our plan. However, our plan is the ego's plan, not Essence's, our true self's. How do we know? Because it's a plan. The plan that Essence has for us is not written down anywhere; it's not known ahead of time. Any plan that is devised is the ego's plan. It's made-up; it's unreal and therefore untrustworthy. Just because we trust our plan or believe in it doesn't make it real or trustworthy. That is the tricky thing about the ego—it's really believable even though it makes things up and isn't wise.
We can stop thinking about how our life is going and stop wondering what will happen next. These have been ineffective strategies for dealing with life. This type of thinking seems necessary, but it isn't. We believe the egoic mind offers wise guidance and a helpful perspective, when it doesn't. This illusion needs to be seen through to be free from the domination of the ego. Just seeing that the egoic mind is a false master can free us to be more present to what is real and true—to life as it is unfolding in front of us.
What is happening now? That is all we truly know about and all we need to know about. Life is coming out of the Now, and it is being moved by something unimaginably wise and good, and we are being carried forward by it. There is no need to contemplate or tell a story about where our life is going or question whether it's going well. It's always moving forward according to plan—right on schedule, but not the ego's schedule.
Gina Lake is a spiritual teacher who is devoted to helping others wake up and live in the moment through her books, counseling, and intensives. She has a master's degree in counseling psychology and over twenty years experience supporting people in their spiritual growth. Her books include Loving in the Moment, Radical Happiness, Embracing the Now, Anatomy of Desire, Return to Essence, What About Now? Living in the Now, and Getting Free. Her website offers information about her books and consultations, free e-books, book excerpts, a free monthly newsletter, a blog, and audio and video recordings: http://www.radicalhappiness.com.