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October 20, 2010

Hopelessness: it’s a Good Thing. ~ Eve Eliot

Bask in the agony of it all.

It’s a good thing, hopelessness. It pushes you into the present moment.

Hope—having to do always with anticipation of improvement in the future—lifts us up and out of where we are.

If we are despairing of future improvement—hopeless—we can sink into the present, into whatever is right under our feet right in this moment.

Hopelessness relieves you of having to continue to believe in a future. Bask in the relief of this.

Bask by becoming aware of your body. Wherever you are now, sitting, standing, walking, feel the weight of your body. If you are sitting or reclining, feel the weight of your body on the surface beneath you.

Take in the pleasure of being present. The pleasure of presence dwells in your awareness of the moment in your body, and the relief of finally giving up the need for strategies, plans, solution, action. This moment…this pleasure…is not about action, not about accomplishment, not about moving forward.

It is about moving inward.

Move into awareness of your own breathing. In the container of your heavy body holding still, standing, sitting, or reclining, notice the subtle movement of the breath. This is how to move inward, where peace is already available, and this peace has nothing at all to do with the diet, the relationship, the finances, with solutions of any kind. It is already here, free of conditions.

Notice the inhale…notice the exhale.

It’s boring, I know. But just for this moment, notice another inhale…

So…embrace hopelessness, just for this breathing moment.

No more diets. It’s hopeless, your weight issue.

No more having to rise to the occasion of going out on a date. The social life…hopeless.

No more having to devise a new strategy to turn the business around. It’s not happening.

The teenagers? Don’t even think about considering the possibility that they can be other than they are.

A terminal diagnosis. That is daunting.

But all these can be held in the heart the same way, with openness and compassion for the agony of it all.

Bask in the agony of it all. Breathe in the hopelessness, which is an arrow that points to…surrender.

What really matters is that you are able to be there for other experiencers of hopelessness.

What really matters is that you let the people you love know you are grateful to them.

Breathe in now.

Eve Elliot is a psychotherapist, yoga and meditation teacher. She’s authored five CDs  and several books, including, Attention Shoppers! The Woman’s Guide to Enlightenment Through Shopping. She’s been interviewed over 60 times for TV, magazines, and newspapers including The Boston Globe and has been a sought after expert in the field of eating disorders.

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