A Practice of Emotional Wellness
There’s always something to strive for, something that needs improvement or something we need more of in order for us to feel satisfied with our lives. This future-focused approach is certainly en-grained in our culture. Along with the basics of survival, we are faced with the pursuit of optimizing our existence. Everywhere you look, you will find people moving through their daily lives whileÂ harboring a low-grade preoccupation with what isn’t enough: not enough money, not enough time, not enough beautiful objects; health and image are not good enough.
Guess what? Today it’s good enough. Today, everything you have, are and do… is enough. How could that be? Simple, you get to choose it. You get to choose to see with a different set of eyes. You get to choose to look all around you and see what you do have, and make the decision to work with it as though it’s all you have. Wanting more is a natural instinct, but it can also strip us from joy in the moment. When you choose to see your possessions and resources as meager and requiring improvement, you foster a scarcity mentality; which can leave you feeling empty and inadequate, with a constant need for improvement. “Not good enough until I …(have, am, look like)” How can these feelings be good for anyone’s self-worth?
Here is a practice to try: No matter how much money you still need, no matter how outdated and over-worn some of your clothes, furnishings and supplies are looking to you, no matter how much you wish you spent more time taking care of your body and appearance, stop for one minute each day. Stop and notice. Ask yourself, what have I got right now that is working for me (regardless if I wish I had a better, sleeker version)? What am I grateful for having in my world right now, today? The theme of this approach to noticing what you’ve got is to be willing to accept where you are today, and be willing to work with it, as though it were all you could ever have. This is also an extension of the mindfulness practice of presence, which also is one of the health benefits of yoga. Being present: right here, right now, stripping away angst or a sense of in-completion regarding the past or the future.
There are people who possess little, utilize little and leave little impact. The few items they use are treasured and appreciated, regardless of quality. The quality of anything lies in the reverence you give it. If you tell yourself your home isn’t good enough, it isn’t. Or you can appreciate that you have a shelter, and that it’s working for you right now. If you decide that your old cashmere sweater that you’ve worn at least a hundred times is still your favorite piece, even if it’s coming apart, then you are wearing it with love which is a beautiful feeling that inadequacy cannot penetrate.
Today you can take a break from worrying about what’s not good enough yet. Because this moment is all you have for certain, you’re not guaranteed the chance to work on that “yet”. Today you can choose to notice how full your cup is, and be willing to work with what you’ve got.