Everyone wonders whether or not there is one Great Secret for truly successful living. There is. And it is not a secret. It has been quietly, steadily telling itself right in front of us all along. We just couldn’t hear it over the clatter and chatter of our own secret demands.
Listen quietly for a moment. Everything can change right now. Learning to hear this Supreme Secret is no more difficult than choosing whether to swim against a current or to let it carry you safely to the shore. Let it speak its wisdom to that secret part of you that cannot only hear what it is saying but that is, in reality, its very voice. Listen to it now.
It is saying, “Want What Life Wants.”
Think about it. Locked within these four simple words is the secret of an uncompromising power for effortless living; a new kind of power that never fails to place you on the winning side of any situation. Why? Because when you want what Life wants, your wish is for Life itself.
“What if I don’t like what Life brings to me?”
Try to see that it is not what Life has brought to you that you don’t like. It is your reactions that turn the gift of Life into the resentment of it.
“I don’t want to sound ungrateful, but speaking plainly, I’m tired of being unhappy. What difference does it make why I feel this way?”
Because these unhappy feelings are born out of Life failing to conform to your ideas of what you need to be happy. This shows you, if you will see it, that Life itself isn’t denying you happiness. It is your ideas about Life that have failed you. Give up these wrong ideas instead of giving up on Life. Be increasingly willing to see that they are nothing but a constant source of conflict. Your false nature will tell you that you must have these self-protecting ideas; that you can’t live without them or you will lose something valuable. What you must do, in spite of any such protest to the contrary, is to see that you can’t live with them. All you will lose is your unhappiness.
“Is there a simple guideline to follow when it comes to distinguishing between what Life wants and what I want? How can I easily tell which is which?”
Always remember the following. If any want is the source of anxiety or sorrow, that want is yours and not Life’s. If the want has pain, it is in vain. To let Real Life flood in, pull yourself out of the flood of self-wants that promise a future pleasure but only deliver a present pain.
“How do I pull myself out of the flood of my own wants?”
See that you are being washed away by them and you will grow tired of being bounced along. Here is a key. Never accept the presence of any mental or emotional suffering as necessary no matter how much importance these impostors lend to a particularly pressing want. By refusing their dark presence, you make space for the real Present. This is where the Life you want and that wants you is waiting.”
Let Life bring you itself. Welcome it. At each instant, it is new, full — untouched and undiminished by any moment before it. To enter into this full relationship with Life is to give yourself to your Self. Fulfilling the true purpose of Life is fulfilling yourself. They are one and the same. Want What Life Wants.
(Excerpted from The Essential Laws of Fearless Living, Red Wheel/Weiser Books)