My father was never discouraged. Not that he didn’t show it… he wasn’t discouraged. I remember him having doubts, whether something could work, but not discouraged. 1
So what did he have that most of you don’t have?
Let’s see first what discourage is on the level of feelings, and feelings dynamics? Because unless we know how a feeling is born, at the end of what process, we have no idea how to counter it.
Discouragement is one of the most harmful feelings you can have, because whenever it happens, it makes you reduce the size of the box you live in… And remember? What we want is grow… bigger box… so discouragement works against what we are up to here.
So here is the inner dynamic:
But it has an outcome of yes, no, enough, not enough.
You have an expectation… an expectation of a result, that it’s going to work this way or that… the way you imagine it would.
You also have a thought that this is it, you’ll be done when it’s done.
You do this and that is going to be the result.
Eat eggs for a week, and miraculously be healthy and thin for the rest of life.
Exaggeration? Of course, I am trying to make a point. But the principle is that one action will produce fast, and fool proof result.
It’s the mind!
The body with its feelings knows that just because you ate right today, you still need to eat right tomorrow.
But the mind doesn’t know that. So it is discouraged.
Tai says that living life as an experiment, ok, he doesn’t say that… So what does Tai say? Do experiments until you find what works. In health, wealth, love and happiness.
He says the only mistake you can make is run an experiment too long.
What he isn’t saying is this: an experiment run too long is the sign that you never considered it an experiment, you considered it the right thing to do.
Experiment means: testing. It is an alert, aware state, where nothing goes unnoticed.
But when you live your life that everything you do has to be the right thing, you live a life on a roller coaster. Jerked, from disappointment to smugness to disappointment.
And, of course, this 99% includes your doctors, your scientists, your psychologists… And your parents. And your spouses.
What you have here is a narrow cone of vision, and a short cone of vision. What you have here is a vision so short, that process can’t even fit there.
And if you have no room for process in your cone of vision, then you have no room for it in your life.
You live a life as if you were risking it all, when you make a change, and then go to sleep. Never actually looking at reality and see how it worked what you changed. never see a move for what it is: just a move.
I used to be like you. And as a dyslexic, I used to act on insufficient or inaccurate data.
On my limited understanding. On my faulty understanding. On my hopes.
I was always disappointed. I, like you, expected everything to turn out, all the time, without fault.
It took me a lot of steps to return myself from the brink of disappointment and discouragement.
The phases of my learning to be like my father are best indicated with little sayings.
- The first one: It ain’t necessarily so…
This made me suspend my judgment… and look again and again and again, with curiosity. Or inquire into my feelings.
One of the signs of the disappointment and discouragement was me saying: I can’t.
And that I could poke holes in: who said so and how would you know? I could ask myself, and have no authoritative answer… I didn’t know that I could not… And that was that.
The other was an incident that I have shared: A friend of mine who I frequently turned for rescue when I saw the end of the world financially… either the rent, or the printing bill, or both needed to be paid and there was no money.
This time he said: “You can do it” in an eerily talking to a baby voice. I was pissed.
But when I hung up the phone, I looked, and lo and behold, there were several ways I could sell enough advertising (I owned a magazine) to cover the bills, in a few days, in time to pay the bills.
- Another of my favorite sayings is: “It ain’t nothing till I call it…” from the three umpires story.
You see, disappointment and discouragement get cemented by you saying something. This “It ain’t nothing till I call it…” prevents you to say something prematurely.
Some think that you have to say something, and you better say something positive. But that is harmful, maybe more harmful than saying something bad.
The art of keeping you in action is to say nothing… to refuse to jump into conclusions, or say that: I refuse to jump into conclusions.
Certainty is a deadness. And anything you are certain of is like a thing that nails your foot to the floor.
You can now dance around it, but you are not going anywhere.
And the whole world shows up as “not that”. Unattainable.
It’s the certainty, stupid…
Keeping your world malleable, living life as an experiment is not something that the mind will say yes to… but you are more than your mind… or at least you can be more than your mind.
Everything you could use to grow: awareness, big picture, long range vision, etc., all the spiritual capacities are an attack on the limited perspective of the human mind, because all of those are interested in seeing, instead of being sure, like the mind is interested in.
There is no growth possible with the mind.
This is why I was so excited, and am determined to become masterful at teaching, the dynamics of Feelings, taught in the books “Feelings” and “Words” by Margoczi.
Because if you learn to feel your feelings, accurately, knowing what they are doing, you are out of the mind. And you can start growing.
Get off the roller coaster, and start living your life as an experiment… grow, and attain the good life.
Because the mind cannot handle a wide cone of vision. It’s not even interested in looking.
PS: This is where I was 9 months ago:
Being discouraged, the temptation to give up
I am working on something that for me is like climbing the Mount Everest. Why? Because it needs skills and capacities I haven’t excelled at.
I have told you before that I am not very smart… especially with certain things.
I have been “working” on it, more like “getting ready”… which, for me, is a dance with preparation and discouragement, break. Preparation and despair.
I have learned an important lesson playing Freecell: if it looks impossible to me, 50% chance that if I look again, it is doable.
Something to look impossible, you have to wear a certain set of glasses…
If you have my philosophy: it ain’t necessarily so… then you’ll look again, like I taught you in the dyslexia article.
Just keep on looking at it, looking away, looking at it, looking away, until you see the way out.
So when hopelessness sets in, I know it is what I see, so I look again. Or simply ignore and do some more preparation.
I could swear that reality changed while I looked away, but of course it is only what I see that changed. Before it wasn’t reality, it was a projection of the mind.
From time to time you want to look at your life and be able to say: “You have come a long way, baby”.
PPS: The next article will attempt to put you in the driver seat… from where it is harder to be discouraged…