In Zen training there is a concept that has truly helped me in understanding how I can become so frustrated when “plans” fail to come true. I was conditioned at a young age to believe that if I “make a plan,” and never gave up, it would become a reality. This regulated my position to one that had me believe that “I” was in control and so called success or failure were my responsibility.
So, for a long time, I attempted to live in that reality but nothing I ever “planned” manifested itself as the plan. The idea that I had absolute control over outcome in this section of the universe started to feel increasingly ego-centric and vain. As long as I kept the idea of the plan in my head it seemed like there was no reason for it to not manifest. But, as soon as I stopped believing my own thoughts I ended up engaging in the universe I live in and would do the next thing required. Yikes. It appears there was another plan and it wasn’t mine!
I realized that my “plans” were my seemingly accurate “Story” of a possible future. Nothing wrong with that and sometimes a story can be very inspiring! Except there is my “story” and then the reality of life as a constant flow rearing it’s head and the “Story” changes. My story, no matter how good or how much I may attach, will always be modified or completely changed by the movement of life.
My very first plan was to be a paleontologist and I spent lots of time wandering around Detroit, MI seeking fossils. I was young but was thoroughly convinced that the Detroit area probably had a wealth of fossils not yet found. I spent most of my time breaking rocks apart but never found a Tyrannosaurus Skeleton. (But then no one ever has in the Detroit area. I was nine, what did I expect?) Then I was going to be a chemist. Then a teacher. A doctor. But as experiences in transience continued I finally decided to be a musician and I stayed with that for decades. Unfortunately two dynamics, one was the uncontrolled ego and the other a fondness for chemicals changed that plan. (Or destroyed it depending on your take.)
After some recovery I decided to be a psychologist. Why not? But I ended up more as a social worker/ counselor in the substance abuse field. I started to feel crispy around the edges so retired from that field.
I am now writing, presenting workshops, and supporting any and all who are on a journey of expansion regardless of the vehicle. What I like about all of the above is noticing that process of never becoming anything but was always falling into the next future. It’s amazing how everything I ever did actually supports the temporary place I exist in right now.
I am deeply in love with this journey. Everything I experience leads me to embrace the next experience. I am learning to relax by embracing the falling itself and stop resisting what life offers.
I stand in awe and wonder of what the next falling may be.
Take care of you!