First and foremost, I wish you all a happy new year (it's almost Chinese New Year) !
Being January, we have all these new goals and a clear picture of how our year is supposed to go if we are going to be happy... We might have decided to lose weight because we think that losing weight will make us happier, but we might actually be wrong...
As a Feng Shui consultant, it is no surprise that many people consult me for a specific outcome:
“Can you improve my love corner so I stay married forever?”
“ I really want to be rich!”
I generally say: “These are your current goals, but there is little I can do for you regarding these specific outcomes.” A disappointed look ensues. But I add: “What if I show you a way to interior peace that leads you to a happier life, rather than getting the exact things you just mentioned? Would you not want that instead?”
Here, I generally get a torn look.
As humans, we actually have trouble deciding between being happy and between the things we think will make us happy. Until we actually win the lottery, we really don’t know what it feels like to win the lottery. But the data shows that a vast majority of lottery winners end up way unhappier than before.
Until we become rich and famous, we actually don’t know what it feels like to be famous. We just were told by society (our conditioning) that it was a desirable thing to become so we have an idea of it. The actor Jim Carey said: “I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it's not the answer.”
Centuries ago, Lao Tzu wrote the seminal Chinese text Tao Te Ching, which presented the four cardinal virtues that humans should follow in order to gain higher wisdom and greater happiness. They are a reverence for all life, natural sincerity, gentleness, and supportiveness. Many Feng Shui principles of today are largely inspired by bringing these ideas to fruition.
With all this in mind, I prefer helping people enhance their homes - and their lives - with the understanding that things will happen the way they are supposed to happen rather than doing it to achieve a certain outcome. I chase a feeling, not a thing.
Many of us suffer with control issues. We want to control what’s going to become of us; we want to shape our surroundings to our desires; we want things to go as planned. But for our sake, we need to think of our immediate "gain" as a potential loss and our "loss" as a potential future blessing. Entertain the idea that the things you think you want may not actually be good for you.
I grapple with anxiety and worry myself, and I find this a really powerful thing to remember. We are all at different stages of our inner growth, our inner peace. So let’s give ourselves a break. Let’s be gentle, as the Tao says.
And when the fear is too great and it takes hold without notice, and even your meditation practice or spiritual rituals fail you, tell yourself this: If you are doing things for the right reasons, you are already in the right. You are already following the Tao, the Feng Shui principle of connection and higher purpose. But if you do things out of fear or panic, you're out of alignment, it's time to realign.
So sit down, get quiet, and consider your goals and desires. Ask yourself if those goals produce warm, fuzzy, powerful feelings or manifest through pangs and sudden attacks. Stay close to the former, and let go of the latter.
PS: Here is an opportunity to transform your resolutions into powerful affirmations.