Thursday, September 03, 2009

Is all of this hoping healthy?

"From the urgent way lovers want each other to the seeker's search for truth, all moving is from the mover. Every pull draws us to the ocean." -Rumi

I remember having a conversation once with a friend about wanting. I remember her saying that she sometimes wished that she could just be one of those people who was content. The word content gushed out of her mouth with equal amounts of desire and contempt. For her, content had somehow come to equal boring, but also freedom from the constant state of longing that had come to pervade her life.

I could relate then, and I can relate now. I am working at a job that could easily be a career, but I am hoping to get my book published and make a living from that. I am trying to love myself as is, while still trying to lose 40 pounds and make my body healthy and my self vibrant. I am happily married to a wonderful man, but a large part of my heart lives in a completely different country. At no point in my life do I ever sit down in my chair and look at my life and think, 'yes.' I always seem to have something to do to get me somewhere else. It is exhausting.

I have to wonder if I should just stop already. Should I just focus on the career and leave the big dreams of publication? Should I admit to myself that I am going to be heavy forever and forget my hopes of health? Should I ignore my hope that someday I am going to take care of orphaned baby elephants or do a book tour or run workshops for women, or be able to travel whenever and wherever I want to? Should I stop looking forward in my life and start living in it right now? Is it possible to do both?

Is all of this hoping healthy?

22 comments:

Lucrecer said...

Will giving up your dreams truly make you happy? Does being "content" mean you have to settle. I say hell NO! Why settle and always be filled with could have and should have moments? Instead of just having those dreams, go after them. Put the action behind the want and you will see the doors open up.

Don't hope to be healthy, choose to be that way. Do what you have to to be the best you that you know how to be. And, for the love of all things happy and lovely, don't give up your dream of being published. Change your definition of what that kind of success really means. If you want the doors to open, they will appear, but you have to get it right in your mind and send out the good vibes so that all you want will come to you.

That I believe and hope for you.

sherry ♥ lee said...

Never lose hope.
Never give up hope.
Hope is everything, it really is.
Without hope, what do you have?

susan said...

i totally get this post because hoping can take us out of the moment, which is the only place where joy can truly exist. future? past? where are they, precisely? i think what's important is which kind of hope are you referring to. there's the kind of hope that keeps us from being present and dealing with and accepting reality, and then there's the kind of hope which inspires us to be the best we can be now so as to affect the next moment, and the moment after that and so on and so on. hoping for a great future means nothing unless we act skillfully and wisely in the present. a teacher of mine always asks, "what does your heart most want?" once i get an inkling of what the truest part of my being wishes for, i can begin to turn towards it. no need to rush, no need to hate where i am. i can be content in 'the now' while taking steps in this moment to create a healthier tomorrow. it's more like activated hope centered right 'here', instead of grasping frantically at the future, which is something we can never get to.
thanks for asking this poignant question... i had to really slow down and hold it here for awhile before typing. ~ sjp

Kel said...

this is a great question Megg

SCJ Jewelry Design said...

I completely agree with Susan, let your dreams inspire you to action. MY husband always said "If you don't have a dream, what is all of this (life) for?"

Hybrid J said...

Hope is the life blood of human beings ...

Never never never give up ...

Marianne said...

I think hoping can be tricky. I think maybe rather than hoping, which is another form of leaving this one precious present moment, we are most content and joyful when we can act - one step after the other walking in the direction of what our heart calls us to.

You are living your life right now. There is no other time or place to live it. The question is are you embracing it fully, keeping your eyes, heart and ears open in every moment - finding the beauty and the doors that you can step through to take you closer and closer to where your heart can be full.

If this hoping feels exhausting then maybe it's not serving you.

What do you think?

Min said...

O Megg... I know just what you mean when you say you are content and then in the same sentence, wanting to lose weight or publish a book etc...
I believe that you can be content at where you are now, if you are grateful and present in the moment. Every moment is needed to grow and learn and move forward.
But hope is a whole different thing .... hope moves us to action... hope is what spurs us to strive for the seemingly impossible. Hope gives you that optimistic attitude so needed in life. Never give up hope...
I write this now, and it seems contradictary to be content and then hope for more... but somehow it's human nature ... maybe it's modern life ... or maybe it all depends on what you are hoping for?
Kindest Wishes
Marina

Rachelle Mee-Chapman said...

Megg,

I'm sure I have said "content" with that same mouthful of desire and contempt. It seems we writerly types are always looking around the corner, longing, longing -- even when what we have is pretty damn good.

Last month my horoscope called me "a sweet little bundle of neurosis." And that's what we are sometimes, we we follow The Muse into this creative life. But what else can we be? This is our only real option.

The one place I feel truly content -- and even then only soometimes -- is in the sanctuary of my studio. So my wish for you this night is that you might find a few moments of contentment at your desk, in the arms of your loved ones, or in the quiet of whatever corner sometimes gives you succor.

Much warmth,

Rachelle

Avia Leigh said...

I believe being content has nothing to do with having goals and aspirations in life. You need goals. Without them, you cannot learn and grow; move forward. Life would be stagnet and that is not contentment. I think being content is enjoying where you are in life. Change is inevidable. Life will always be forever changing, if it didn't you would be dead. So enjoy where you are in your life. Be content and look forward to the changes you want to bring about in your life as well as the changes life brings to you.

Jennifer/The Word Cellar said...

I wrote a blog post related to this the other day. "What if the grass really is greener on the other side?" I asked. We tell ourselves that things look better from a distance. But what if we sometimes use the-grass-isn't-really-greener argument to keep ourselves stuck? To keep ourselves from following our heart's truest desire?

I think we can look toward greener pastures while still enjoying the view all around us right now. At least, I'm trying to.

(the whole post is here if you're interested: http://www.thewordcellar.com/blog/2009/8/27/oh-the-green-green-grass.html)

tamara said...

Completely relate to your pot. I am trying to get my head around where I am going to move to now. I need to find a new job first and that is the most daunting thing because I actually like my job now, but I want to move, the area I live in is not right for me and it’s been too long now. My mother in-law said to me the other day that she did not understand why I was so unhappy. I was shocked because I’m not at all unhappy – in fact I have a pretty good life, and a lot for things to be thankful for, but as I said to her that is the problem, I am too comfy, there is no challenge left here anymore, I need to move on in life and challenge myself again otherwise what’s the point to life. An email came around work the other day with congratulations to long service people. I don’t want to be on that email in 20 years time, I really don’t. What would I look back and say I had achieved apart from a healthy pension (Though that would be good!). Change is a good thing and I think it’s far too easy to get complacent when things are good, but memories come from experiences.

madelyn said...

you seems to me to live so alive

and hope contains the seed of
possibility for the future

so live in the present with those
hopeful seeds

and they will sprout through when
you least expect ~ and when it is time

your blog is so beautiful ~ it is your beautiful and warm spirit that
makes it so:)

postcards from... said...

what marianne said!

i think there is a way to be joyful and accepting of THIS moment, this body, this lifestyle, this place whilst still striving towards another.

for me, the unhealthy pieces of my life have been those parts where all i can focus on is the hoping, or wishing, for something other than what i have now.

xx

Brandi Reynolds said...

perhaps some of it should stop, but I would never encourage you to give up all your hopes. and really, it comes down to you deciding which hopes are worth pursuing and which need to be let go...

I totally understand where you are coming from...

TaraDawn said...

megg - this post truly resonates with me, as i am sure it does with so many others also. so much of this struggle between being "content" and hoping for the future is what seems to live within me on a daily basis. i want to be happy now (and in some ways, i am), but i am afraid of becoming too happy in the now and losing the hope for more...for dreams i am not willing to abandon. it is a struggle indeed, but i fully believe we must always hang on to our hopes and dreams...they are the very essence of our lives...now and in the future.
sending love to you...
taradawn

Amber said...

You really think you can just STOP hoping for these things, sister? Come on, I think you know better. Some people just have this drive in them-- in their cards, if you will, in their charts. And they are meant to do things. Maybe not ALL the things they wish for and hope for, but THAT IS OKAY! Shoot for the moon, right? You catch a star, at least.

Just don't be so hard on yourself, if you don't do every single thing right NOW. And I say that as a woman who is much like you in this way. And yes, we must balance loving the moment, with what we dream. I am not so great at this. But I have found myself FORCED to do it, the last few years. Because all my plans just blow up, or don't work...and then I have to just STOP, and...BE. And I always see that that is okay.

Keep hoping and dreaming. You have something to do here. And take time to be still. Do both.

:)

The15YearOldNaive said...

I remember a couple of months back
i was desired to get my 'novel' published, but that failed. It stayed hiddin my little 'shadowed box', and then a month ago-- that dream, and that passion had dust away.....I've completely lost it...

It's possible to do both! I'm sure. It's like multitasking- actually it is. Impossible is nothing.

xoxo

Lulu said...

I think without hope you have nothing... One should always be hoping for more even if they are content with they way their life is...

I am content with my life, at least I think I am but I still hope- hope for more money, more travel, more experiences, more friends, more love, more dreams.

Without dreams and hope wouldn`t your life be dull? Maybe not at first, but surely after awhile.

Jaime said...

Without hope, where would the momentum for positive change and growth come from? Would you be excited about where your life was heading if you had no hope?

Never stop dreaming and hoping, lovely girl. Never never ever NEVER!

I've missed you *hug*
xo

Jessie said...

Oh, this is a good post. I mean, a really REALLy good post. I think I just came to understand something a little bit better in reading it.

That maybe the trick is in finding a balance between our passions/hopes/dreams/desires with gratitude for what we are experiencing right now in this very moment.

It seems to me that a lot of stuff happens when we're not looking. Including the good stuff. To find a balance between doing the work to move forward and acknowledging the beauties that surround us right now at this very moment. Maybe that's when it all happens...without us even being aware of it. One day we wake up and realize: OMG! I'm living it! :)

Love you, girl. I can't wait to talk to you again one of these days soon. You have a way of helping me to make sense of things.

angel said...

This is a great post. I just had one of the ‘Doh!’ moments and ran back to correct my own site before publishing my comment. You see my own comment form did not match what I’m about to advice. I get less comment than you, so never noticed any problem. I’ve changed it now anyway so here goes.

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