Garry Kramer : When Struggle Strikes

In my experience, people behave one of two ways when struggle strikes: They look outside and grind for causes and cures; or they take meditative timeouts seeking peace of mind. Unfortunately, in either case, they’re lessening the odds of ending their struggle. In fact, they usually end up perpetuating it (e.g., a slump in sports).

Here’s why: Human beings aren’t built to deliberately do “something,” or behave a certain way, in order to find a good feeling. Doing something requires thought, and too much thought in our heads is the reason we struggle in the first place.

There is, however, a surprising—yet intuitive—option that few of us consider: We can actually not try to end our struggle. Rather, we can carry on, simply live, or tend to our crafts with best effort. Since this option requires no deliberate thought, it allows the mind to clear. Clarity of mind then allows the wisdom within us (answers) to rise and fill the space.

Remember: If you feel down and are compelled to do something to fix the feeling (cope)—don’t. The only thing that can end a struggle is your God-given propensity to self-correct. My recommendation: Stay out of its way.

My comments:

Feeling bad about one’s feelings is the root cause for more mental stress. Letting the feelings be is the solution. One cannot “meditate away” problems. Meditation as a practice is supposed to bring one in a “flow” of intuitive action. The struggle Garry Kramer talks about is the struggle with oneself, doubting oneself and feeling bad about one’s feelings but once we remember that “struggle is the essence of life”, we will stop judging and continue unabated what we are doing. Its our mind that judges it to be easy or difficult, good or bad etc. No matter what our little man inside our head tells us, we continue and the flow will stabilize.