We all have things that hook us.
You know, our pet peeves, things that push our buttons, things we roll over and over in our thoughts. We have our internal hooks too like cravings, addictions, clinging and any of those tight, sticky sort of feelings. We hook ourselves with our wild imaginations and all the stories we concoct about who we are and what’s going on. The “good” stuff can hook us too: the compliments, the approval, the ego fluffing. Even the hooks that feel good aren’t helping you. In Buddhism, we call this shenpa, or attachment.
I have some unfortunate news: it’s never going to stop.
Our Velcro coated brains are going to keep getting stuck on every little thing that floats through them–good or bad. People are going to keep doing things that piss you off. People are going to keep complimenting you, and you are going to keep craving it. You are going to keep saying things you regret, and you will roll them over and over in your head when you are trying to sleep at night.
The good news? The act of noticing that you’re hooked helps.
Seeing it clearly is more important than trying to get rid of it.
Step two for dealing with all your sticky, hooked shenpa places?
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Kate Bartolotta is the strongest girl in the world. She is the love child of a pirate and a roller derby queen. She hails from the second star to the right. She doesn't know how to behave with all the apples and ibexes. She doesn't suffer from her eight million freckles, she loves them! She drinks her lemonade right from the jug. Like a rolling stone, Kate gathers no moss. Kate loves kale, being barefoot, Dr. Seuss, singing too loudly, gallivanting, palindromes, blackberries, Elvis Presley, magic tricks and (of course) elephants. She has been charged with (and found guilty of) overusing the exclamation point! When she's not writing, you can find her practicing yoga, running in the woods, playing with her kids, devouring a book, planting dandelions, changing the world and doing her dishes. Kate does not play the accordion. She is on her way to becoming a fabulous massage therapist, a mediocre writer and a compassionate friend to all. This year Kate aspires to finally give up on learning to knit and will instead spend that time writing for elephant journal.
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