No to a lot of things, at least for me at the moment.
I shared — finally — at last night’s women’s meeting, and the topic was letting go and letting God. Yikes. I get the first part of the sentence — to me it means stopping obsessing and living in my thoughts, which prevents me from doing things, or seeing the world as it is and not how I’m imagining it’s happening TO ME. It’s the second half that I’ve decided to well, let go. WHO KNOWS?
Letting go. Today, I realized that even reading magazines like Vogue triggers me. I’m sure I’m not alone, and I’m lucky to have a few years under my belt to know that douchebaggery and money do not buy happiness. Still, it sort of makes me think poorly of myself. To wonder, what if I had done this, or been that, would I be in these people’s shoes? “These people” meaning, all the people inside this evil book who are richer, thinner, and “happier” than I am.
Presently, “letting go” means letting go of my obsessive thoughts, which ensnare me. The ruminating, the overthinking. Giving up. It’s also as much about letting go of the conditioned thinking that comes with our cultural milieu, here in USA, Inc. For example:
I say no to being “successful.” I give up defining my success by other people’s standards and/or ideals.
I give up trying to stay thin.
I give up trying to stay fit.
I give up caring about your morality, as it compares to my own.
I give up wanting to have kids when I think it’s cruel and unusual punishment — to the kids.
I give up feeling bad about this.
I give up caring what my brother does or says, while he’s under the influence of his girlfriend.
I give up feeling guilty about giving up on this.
I give up feeling lazy because I’m not working 80 hours a week.
I give up feeling unproductive when I don’t get anything on my to-do list done.
I give up wanting a house.
I give up wanting to think buying a house is practical or even smart.
I give up thinking making my brain hurt by doing things it’s not good at is “challenging” and therefore, positive.
I could go on and on, but you get the gist. A lot of our obsessive thinking is a form of rebellion, and let me tell you, bucking the system, rebelling, is NOT EASY. It’s not easy on the mind, and it’s definitely not easy on the heart. It’s why, I’d say, a LOT of us drink/drank. The roots of my ennui, in a way, boil down to my absence of perspective on what’s a healthy way to react to striving/achievement, to success — and what’s NOT. Not to mention, it’s very difficult to make healthy mental and emotional choices when ALL AROUND YOU, EVERYONE IS NOT.
Look at our cities. Look at how people actually “live” in Silicon Valley. Look at what the typical American places value on, builds their sense of self around. You can say, That’s fucked up and I don’t want anything to do with it…but on the other hand, you also have to work within the system, at least for a while, in order to safely exit it.
I don’t know. I’m thinking too much now. When I say, I need to learn how to Turn It Off, it means turn off the TV, the computer, the phone, the city, the chitter chatter of people all around me — my friends and family, those closest to my heart — who are stopping making sense to me.
And, when all else fails, I turn on David Byrne because, well, I find his brand of lunacy more intelligent and more comforting than all the creature comforts and mental salves that I’m supposed to want, to hold on to, to fight for.
I give up!