You Can’t Say “No” To Reality - Grasshopper
When it comes to reality, the answer is always “Yes.” Any other answer causes extended suffering.
“No” is usually our patterned answer to reality, but it does not compute, because any rail against reality is denial of reality itself.
Reality doesn’t make requests or demands; it just shows up and makes us deal with it.
Our initial reaction to reality is usually a conditioned one. It’s usually “No,” as in, “No, this can’t be.” The only answer that works is: “Yes, it is.”
Imagine for a moment that you are carrying groceries from the car to your house. All of a sudden, you drop a carton of eggs on the sidewalk and they all break. The initial response is: “Oh, no” or something more profane.
That reaction is representative of our astonishment. If it continues, it’s a dodge of reality. “They should always pack the eggs separately and never stuff them in with other things where they have a good chance of falling out. I’m going to call the manager of that store and give him a piece of my mind. Those eggs are the most expensive because they come from range-free hens and that was the last carton they had. I want to make my signature omelet that everyone loves, blah, blah.”
The longer that “No” goes on, the longer it will takes us to get to “Yes.”
“Yes” is always the answer that we have to eventually come to in order to end the suffering, so how do we shorten the storm?
We have to condition ourselves to say, “Yes.”
Saying “Yes” to reality begins with noticing how often we say “No.”
We’re not going to tackle the initial response head on; we’re going to let our new conditioning erode that one away. Our mission is to notice our initial response to reality and not let it go past the first sentence. Reminds me of a story . . .
I was playing golf with my son who is new to the game. I mentioned to him that the people I like to play golf with the least are people who hit a poor shot and then go on and on about it. After their “Oh, no,” comes a truckload of fertilizer that insures that “No” will grow.
The reality is that all golfers suck; some just suck less than others - They’re the pros. Golfers, at all levels, make errant shots, often multiple times in one hole. I said to my son that anything after the initial response is drama. He got it. “Yes” is getting on to the next shot.
Our response to reality has to be “Yes” or our “No’s” will be our grindstone.
Like the game of golf, responding to reality is simple, but not easy. Malcom Gladwell in his book “Outliers” quotes neuro-scientist Daniel Levitin who says, “. . . ten thousand hours of practice is required to achieve the level of mastery associated with being a world-class expert - in anything.”
We’re never going to master reality but we can hone our response to it. It begins with saying “Yes” and then we have to say it again and again.
Saying “Yes” is the path least traveled, but remains the quickest way out of the illusion of “No.”
We can experience less suffering in life, but it takes practice - practice in saying “Yes.”
All in favor say “Aye.”
All the best,
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