I just saw a post on Facebook that said, “To keep winning, I have to keep improving.” It really bothered me to read that. I felt sad, like someone was drowning and trying to keep their head above water.
I just have 4 issues with this statement:
- Have To
(yeah, just about the whole thing!)
First of all, everything is impermanent. Life is all about changes. We cannot keep things static, and the attachment to keeping things the same, or keeping up a particular level of “success” sets up disappointment. We need to be able to flow with the cycles of life, and to appreciate what is rather than be attached to expectation.
Secondly – winning. I am uncomfortable with the mindset that focuses on winning all the time. Winning against what? Against whom? Does life have to be a competition? I don’t see it that way at all. I know that some can say a win-win situation is possible, but that isn’t really the message of this statement. It’s a desire to always have things on the up and up.
That isn’t human experience. The emphasis on “winning” doesn’t embrace the fullness of life. Sometimes, we are going to lose – and that’s OK. We become resilient by being able to gracefully embrace whatever is. We can be happy, content, and at peace without feeling like we’re “winning.” Winning is based on external events and measurements; contentment is an internal state that we can experience, no matter what our circumstances are.
Life, unfortunately, has devolved into a lot of have-tos for many of us. This creates tremendous pressure and increases our stress and anxiety. My preference is to look at life in terms of choices. I am always free to choose how I respond to every moment (even though sometimes it doesn’t feel like that!). I can choose what actions to take and what direction I want to head in. My body softens and feels more at ease when I look at my life and even my to-do list as choices, rather than have-tos. And it feels a lot more empowering, too.
Improving, or Growing?
Lastly – improving. The implication here is that there’s something not good enough, something wrong. Why else would we need to improve? I like the idea of growing, because we allow ourselves to expand and become more of who we are. But the idea of improving is, in a way, doing violence to ourselves. We believe we aren’t good enough as we are; we’ve got to be better.
Already Whole and Complete
My inner knowing tells me that each of us is already whole and complete within. The path of growth is about revealing more and more of that. But it isn’t from a perspective that we aren’t good enough or there’s something wrong with us. It’s from already being a blessing on this earth. Every one of us is a Divine Being, and born good enough. Born worthy. We came into the world as radiant expressions of Infinite Love. Then, we forgot.
Our path is of remembering who we truly are. That transcends have-tos, keeping things, winning, and improving. It’s fine to do all those things. But don’t mistake that as the path to wholeness, freedom, and Oneness.
I’ll happily receive Oneness and Wholeness, and release the winning and improving, thank you very much. How about you?
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