Day 114 of my Lifestyle Challenge
Today I was sanding some spackle that filled a hole in the wall, a hole that I made by mistake while mounting a shelf, a shelf I put there to hold remote controls, remote controls for our TV and other devices, devices that enable us to watch TV shows like Mr. Robot. I was sanding this spackle while talking with Cindy, who was in the Kitchen, cleaning a pot or something. We talked about Google being in the South Bay, in Mountain View. Google is based in Mountain View.
I used to own a house in Mountain View, long after Google got big, a pretty big house, an expensive house, a house that I owned all of, just one of the houses I owned. And now I don’t own a house in Mountain View. And then my limiting beliefs came in: “I’ll never be rich again like I was then,” I thought. This is where Vipassana really helped. I noticed the thought and allowed it to be there; I didn’t take it seriously, I didn’t engage with it. I just noticed it for what it was, a thought, and let it go, let it do whatever it needed to do. In that space between the stimulus of a thought and my next action was the freedom to choose. I found myself choosing to put my attention on my goals, on what I choose for myself, on the life I am planning to build, the life that I am building with Cindy. In that moment, I was free to put my attention where I chose to.
A while later I was talking with Cindy and I wasn’t being as supportive and helpful as I wanted to be, and I suddenly felt that I was doing it wrong. Again, Vipassana stepped in. I was able to notice that I had a belief, and a set of visceral body sensations, that carried the message that I’m not capable of supporting Cindy emotionally. I was able to notice and watch the thought and associated sensations, and create space between that and my response. My chosen response was to stay present and continue the conversation, to let go of any kind of outcome, and to just curiously explore what was unfolding.
We are continually being flooded with limiting beliefs. The more we can honor them for what they are, give them space, not grab at them or push them away, not fight with them, or ignore them, but allow them to be a part of us, and to bring our awareness to them with curiosity, the more we can create a container in which they can do what they need to, which is often dissolve and transform, and a container in which we can then decide where to place our attention in the next moment.
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