What if despite all that you bring to the table, your original plan does not pan out?
Recently, I had such an experience where I had to reframe what success meant to me. As someone who has ever embarked on completing a project, you may resonate with my story. I put together a short video in which I share a recent "failure" that actually became a success as soon as I reframed it and then, amazingly, this actually led to the desired result I was originally going for. And all it took was: Showing up for the day.
Watch the video below to hear the full story:
I share a lot on this blog about detachment from end-results, letting go of negative emotions and sowing better seeds to reap the virtuous life we want to create. And even though from studying these principles from success literature, Buddhist philosophy and Western mysticism, I am gaining a deeper understanding, actually put these practices is far from easy.
Obstacles On the Path
So this is what happened:
For this month's video installment, I set about my plans to create a video presentation on Deepak Chopra's Law of Karma (part of a book review and interpretation series you can find here). As I began filming in my backyard, I first realized that my camera battery was dying. This was puzzling because I had done the pre-shoot prep the night before and charged all batteries. "Very well", I said and brought out my other battery that was indeed fully charged and ready to go.
Next, as I started to record the video, I saw that my sound recorder (the beautiful H4N) was full in capacity - even though, I had formatted the disk the night before! It turned out that I had not done it correctly (inspite of having used this thing for several years, I still stumbled upon the novice error of deleting the content on the harddrive and not the real thing!) Well, I took a deep breath, formatted the disk and continued.
Then, as I began presenting the content, my lovely young friends (neighbors' kids ranging from 4 to 12 years in age) came hopping along excitedly to see what fun I was up to. Seeing the camera, tripod and my set-up generally excites them as they are all budding artists. And so, I found myself getting distracted, or shall I say rather drawn by their curiosity and fascination with the film process!
Soon, they were gone and I was ready to do the shoot. But now, I fumbled on my words and struggled to find the flow and inspiration. I referred to my notes but nothing! I took some deep breaths after which I began to find my eloquence.
It was not going to be that easy, was it? Because just as I started to speak with ease and rhythm, it started to rain. I quickly brought my equipment into dryland and began moping about! I felt like my day was a total wasted, filled with distractions, technical inconveniences, lack of inspiration and a creative struggle for completion.
The Wise Man Speaks
Thankfully, my wise husband was in the house when all of this was happening. He asked me, "What's going on?" I shared with him the day's experience. He simply smiled and said, "You showed up. That is what matters."
You know how some women are dissatisfied when their partners are "men of few words"? Well, in my case, I am just so blessed. In just a few words, my husband had shed crystal clear light on the message of the day.
You see, on my path of self-discovery and happiness, I have stumbled many times. And often it was because I didn't have the courage to show up. Excuses would mar my progress towards my beloved goals and dreams. Resistance would have an upper hand and self-pity would blurr my vision.
But today, I had showed up to my day, to my life, to my goals and dreams. I had done the preparation. I had set the intention. And I had gotten out of bed one more time to fulfill my dreams. Yes, the video did not get done in the way I had planned. But I did all I could to make it happen. I did what I said I would, put all my effort into the creative process and I showed up. This alone had to be enough. No, I didn't change the world. But once I realized that my success was in showing up, I had accepted what is. I had accepted the present moment. Most importantly, I was happy about it.
This attitude helped me to focus all my attention on what I can do versus what the outcome should be. It helped me to be detached about the outcomes while being more present with the present moment.
This is where detachment flowers into peace of mind. This is where "mistakes" become gifts to share.
I, then, made the above video to share all that transpired during the day and what I had learnt from my experience. That felt good. I had reframed the situation to align with a higher mode of thinking. And I was freed from judgments of success. I was freed from expectations and from results. I was free. And that sense of freedom brought me happiness.
The Goal Achieved Afterall
It so happens that sharing my experience put me in a heightened state of well-being and right after I made the above video, I recorded the video about Deepak's Law of Karma! In the end, I did complete what I set out to do. But it only happened after I had let go of expectations, judgments and attachments!
What an amazing difference it makes to change the way we look at the events of our lives!
I would love to know:
How have you dealt with situations when things do not go as planned and what precious lessons did you bring into your awareness? Share your insights in the comments below because it could be exactly what someone needs and wants to hear. You can make a difference by sharing from your life.
By the way, I send my gratitude to Alberto Restifo for the outstanding landscape image that I used in the thumbnail of this video.
Wishing you oceans of deep mental and emotional peace and prosperity,
Helping You Live A Happier Life
PS: In recording this video, I found the inspiration to complete my project - which goes to show that sharing what you learned from your "mistakes" can be the recipe for your healing/success you are seeking.
I am really grateful that you took the time to read this message. Thank you for being part of our Happiness Lovers Family. And if you are not yet a Happiness Lover, join our family now by going here.