A key to serenity, for sure.
So much of my angst throughout all times of my life is about the future or the past. There are times when I don’t know what to do with this day, but those are rare. I have not completely lost that feeling of impending doom so many alcoholics talk about. And maybe it’s just human. After all, doom is impending, really, for all of us. Unlike the animals, we know it, and we fear it, and we dread it.
I can quickly dismiss bad feelings about the past because it’s over. One of my most meaningful meditations came from The Daily Word. It said that at times I have not done as well as I should have done, but that getting past “mistakes” is a major step toward serenity. I may not have made the best choices about what to do, but I am sorry, and I have learned from it. I release the past and live in the now.
A bigger problem for me is sort of wishing the past had been different, at times. Part of that has to do with what I did or failed to do, other parts is just wishing in a childish way that things had been different. Once in a while I can follow a fantasy in my mind that begins with, “If only……..”
My thoughts of the future are often tinged with dread. I won’t write, “full of dread,” because they’re not. But tinged with it. I can worry about my future, the futures of others, the future of the planet or sun or universe. It all, I am told, will end in destruction.
So then. I now always quickly realize that my bad feelings about the past or future are not to be indulged in. It’s become part of my thinking that I seek to let go of those things. I can spend a longer time with good memories or good feelings about the future, but not too long.
Turning my attention to today makes me take action more and think less. For me, thinking is good, to a point. But too much time in my head, good or bad, makes me miss things that are here and now. There are always books to read and animals to interact with and things to clean, always. I’m glad I can sit quietly and be peaceful but I’m sure there’s a healthy limit.
I’m very very lucky right now to have nothing seriously wrong with me or my loved ones. I know that will change soon, it always does. But I do try to appreciate this fact every day while it’s here. Each day I know I should do what that day calls for. There’s work and upkeep of my environment, relationships with animals and people, recovery and relaxation. One day at a time, my life is good.