I have met so many fascinating people lately because I stopped isolating myself at home. Stopped wrapping myself in that wet, smelly depression blanket. Stopped pulling the blinds down, spending days wallowing in self-pity. I stopped self-medicating 4 months ago. Stopped numbing my pain (and senses!) and as a result I stopped feeling worthless.
Not feeling worthless doesn’t equal feeling confident but the combination of stopping to put myself down, no longer beating myself up over the past or worrying constantly about the future, I no longer need to numb my life. The Bhuddist teachings and meditation that I started embracing – and finally living – have made a huge difference in my life. And to my personality.
It has not only made me a much more positive and happy person, but it has made me a much nicer person. But one that is even more impactful and successful than the old, “always-driving-hard-for-targets” and not so nice one…
My boss told me on the phone the other day how happy it makes him to see the transformation I’ve gone through in the last four months. He said “I don’t know what you’re doing but whatever it is please keep doing it because you seem really HAPPY and it makes me so happy to hear you sounding happy”. He said it is a joy to work with me now because having a conversation with me these days is easy. He said it’s not just that I speak differently and listen differently but the sound of my voice is even different. There’s none of that stress, frustration and sometimes even aggression that used to come through all the time. And he emphasised how much more of an impact I am having because of that change and how much faster I am starting to achieve even better results.
And I work a lot less, so he’s happy and I’m happy! 😉
I’m also finding that the more I “let go” the more I open up. To life. To people. I used to be this high strung over achiever who had a lot of opinions and was quite judgmental. There were certain people I would never have befriended, or even talked to, but that has changed. I don’t judge people like I used to. I don’t jump to conclusions or make assumptions about people or about their motivations. I am a lot less cynical. I always assume good intent and I see people. I hear people. And I recognise every person I encounter for something. I try to always learn one thing from every person I meet these days – be it a super successful Swedish chef living in NYC giving a talk at work, or be it the homeless guy outside the coffee shop this morning, who smoked a cigarette and told me about his colon cancer…
It’s a amazing transformation I’ve gone through in a few months time really (Yes, Luther, screw you! I am proud of myself and I’m bragging about it!!!) and the more I study, learn and evolve, the better I feel and the stronger I get. The higher I get! On life. The more I want to live life. It’s like every cell in my body is awake at last and I see, hear, smell and taste things for the first time in my life! It is truly intoxicating and highly addictive.
As my boss took a minute to give me some personal feedback and real appreciation and gratitude, about “whatever your doing keep doing it”, I told him it is very simple: it is meditation and Buddhism. And this guy sitting next to me overheard me saying that and struck up a conversation…
And it was one of the most open, honest and interesting conversations I’ve had in years. And one far more personal than I am normally able to be with people I have known my whole life, including my family. This guy and I really connected. We shared some deeply personal stories and experiences and it was amazing. He told me he was a monk for 15 years and what he learned from that and how he has now found a way to incorporate those values and learnings into a more “normal life”. Very inspiring! But even more importantly: I am glad to see that I’ve managed to learn and incorporate many of those values in my life. Minus the 15 years and hardships of living in a monastery… 🙂
I am on a very good path and I look at my life in a whole different way these days. It gives me a lot of happiness and a lot of hope and curiosity about the future, with a lot less stress and anxiety. Because I’ve let go of so many desires, cravings and aspirations. I don’t beat myself up over past mistakes anymore. They’re in the past. They’re gone. They’re finished. And I can’t let them define me. If I let them define me I will for certain repeat them. And I don’t worry about the future all the time, because I know that what is shaping my future is what I do, and how I live my life, today. So I focus on being present and making the most out of every moment of every day instead. Hear and now.
And I am 100% certain, that in the end that will help me reach much farther, be more complete and live a much more fulfilling and happy life.
And on those notes, here’s a great talk by my favourite teacher and great inspiration in life, Ajahn Brahm: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8LAuMl-QdOM&feature=share