Constantly Working but Still Feel Stuck? Remember to Seal with a Kiss.
Posted Jan 08 2009 4:20pm
One of the chief complaints of my clients: "I haven't really accomplished anything. I keep working constantly. I haven't had a vacation in I don't know when but I'm not really getting anywhere. I know I should be, but I'm just not satisfied with anything I'm doing. All I see is how much more there still is to do."
It is important when engaging in an action to be aware of both initial and changing intentions. Very often we establish for ourselves long lists of activities and matters requiring our attention without a clear understanding of what we are intending to achieve. For this reason it is common for people to find themselves extraordinarily busy, which implies a fullness in their day, while feeling deeply unfulfilled, lacking a sense of joyful engagement with life and having no inner sense of progress even after expending much effort and many hours in activity.
Activities engaged in with a true sense of intention, and by this I refer both to actual intention as well as symbolic intention, are the basis for a fulfilling life. This holds true for even the most mundane of activities.
For example, the act of sweeping one's floor, when done with intention and care can be action of literal significance in the good stewardship of your material possessions and loving respect for one's home and, by extension, for oneself and those who reside within that home. It can also take on a symbolic significance which essentially transforms it into a ritual. You may, for example, use the act of sweeping as an external sign that you are whisking away troublesome and petty concerns from your mind.
This intention, combined with action, has the effect of elevating an otherwise neutral act (or negative act if you perform it with resentment of the task or of your housemate who have left it to you) to one that is energetically positive. Symbolically cleansing yourself of negativity, done with sincere conscious intention will result in your engaging in kinder, more compassionate and rationally sound actions in the hours that follow. The stronger the intention and the more thorough the action, the greater the resulting effect.
Likewise, engaging in the act with resentment and bitterness further animates that energy. The stronger the resentment, the more likely you will slam the cabinet door to announce that once again you have emptied the dishwasher while all the other good for nothin' bums were busy playing Guitar Hero. They don't want to hear the slamming so they turn up the volume, annoying you further. Action, reaction. This is what is meant by karma.
What about changing intention? That is a fun one. I may start by being "altruistic" when inside I'm really a little pissy maybe. So, I start cleaning. Sweep sweep sweep. Bye bye bad crabby thoughts. Happy happy. Husband walks in, steps over the broom on his way to put a glass in the sink I just cleaned never bothering to check and see that the dishwasher is empty and he could just put it in there. Suddenly my sweeping changes. It becomes a little more...vigorous. SWEEPING SWEEPING. Then maybe cleaning some cabinets. Washing walls. Making a production of it. You know, martyrdom by housecleaning. Happens all the time. Don't tell me you've never gone from angel to raving loony in 2.8 seconds. Sometimes our nice actions are conditional. Own it.
But back to fulfillment. Let's assume we are working on the side of good here, shall we? How do you increase the positive power of your actions?
Taking the action all the way through to completion, sealing it with a kiss as it were (in the above example, this means putting away the broom and enjoying a sense of satisfaction and pleasure in the completed task) is a further critical component very often missed if not outright denied by many. So often we don't do complete work and when we do we barely pause to notice it. This unfortunately keeps one locked in a state of suffering. If you fail to recognize and feel a sense of pleasure in what you have done before racing to the next task...if you only focus on "getting things done" without ever acknowledging these "things" as your LIFE, that these "mundane" activities are as integral a part of your life as any lofty goal you may fancy yourself pursuing someday...and if you never seal any action with a kiss, never acknowledging your time spent as valuable, worthy and complete, how can you ever feel any sense of fulfillment?
You are simply pouring more water into a sieve and wondering why you remain thirsty.
The greater your awareness of the actual and potentially symbolic significance of each of your actions, including your awareness of the energetic impact of actions not taken such as failing to take out the garbage, or letting junk mail sit on your desk, the greater your opportunity to effect profound positive change in your life. You may not be able to achieve this with every single thought and action, of course, but the more you trend in this direction, the greater your potential to find true lasting joy and peace of mind.
You will become increasingly aware, quite naturally, of the ways in which your environment contains contradictory or dissonant energies and will find yourself removing what does not promote your wellbeing with increasing ease. This positive shifting of the energy in your environment allows it to further support you. If this sounds too "woo woo" just stop for a second and think about how many times you have looked in the fridge and saw "nothing" to eat. Sometimes just the stagnant energy of seeing the same jars in the door, or left overs that aren't exactly fresh but are not quite bad enough to toss yet taints what you see. Toss out a couple things you know you aren't going to eat and suddenly the fridge just "feels better", right?
Over time you will see that your environment becomes an actual external expression of the best parts of you, mirroring back the ideals and values you are striving to live by. This reflection and reminder of your positive progress forms a powerful point of reference for healthy self-esteem as your space increasingly reflects your true self back to you.