A long-time friend sent this message:
I need to do something I just don’t feel like doing.
I’ve put it off for too long now. It will only take a couple of hours. Not doing it will only make it worse.
I can relate—you?
It’s a thought, not the thing itself.
What-ever the thing is or who-ever the thing is: that’s not what’s holding you back. It’s the thought of the thing, person, situation or reaction.
To see the thought…as-a-thought…is the first step to freedom.
So, take a breath and turn around in consciousness.
Be aware of the thought-as-a-thought.
Notice how the thought about the thing is what fixates and freezes your awareness. This isn’t a philosophical dodge to deny the existence of a situation or person out there. It’s not a way to distance you from your life.
It’s quite the opposite.
The thought that holds you back is already distancing you from your life, from taking the next step on your path. It’s the mind’s entanglement with the thought that keeps you more enthralled with your story than engaged with the grounded experience of your life.
Take a breath…and see that.
Now comes the tricky part; once you see that thought…stop. Don’t pile thought upon thought. When you see the thought that’s kept you spinning your karmic wheels, restrain the mind’s tendency to elaborate. To heap stories, judgments and opinions on top of the limiting thought.
You don’t have to figure it out.
It’s not necessary to evaluate the thought, nor understand it. These mental activities tangle your awareness in knots of thinking and they don’t move your life forward.
Just see the thought that’s kept you stuck.
And breathe. Now, expand the field of awareness to include the sensations the thought triggers in your body. And continue to breathe. The core practice for untangling consciousness from patterns of reactivity is to infuse the thoughts, emotions, and sensation with loving awareness.
Loving awareness naturally disentangles you. And as awareness disentangles, clarity arises. Within clarity what to do becomes clear.
Now, with loving awareness trust what you see.
That’s the next step on your path: take a breath and step forward.
Life will guide you.
What’s your next step?
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Ed: Bryonie Wise