The What if Game

Have you ever played the ‘What if Game?’ You know the one….’ What if I won the lotto….what if I had everything I wanted, what if my partner, husband, wife, lover, brother, sister, co worker wasn’t so God damned lazy, insensitive, angry etc. etc. etc…..what if everything was perfect, no hassles, no worries, what if, what if, what if……what if I didn’t have to do this, what if I didn’t have to do that… wouldn’t life be just so wonderful?

Sound familiar? Thought so! I’ve played this game too! Now the thing that bothers me about this game, is it doesn’t make us feel very good, in fact it really adds to our feelings of powerlessness and dissatisfaction and discouragement doesn’t it? So why do we continue to play it?

Loads of shaking of heads I’m guessing…. Oooooh dunno! Well me neither, so I’m in a playful mood today, do ya want to try a new game?

This is also called the What if Game, but it’s a little bit different, stay with me it goes a little like this….

What if…..just for today…. Everything is perfect, naw, naw, don’t scream at me, hear me out! What if just for today, for this moment I accept what is happening in my life, what if I take a deep, deep breath and say this is okay, this is all okay , I accept where I am right now, I may not be terribly happy or content with what life is throwing at me, but hey here I am, this is where I am , right now, and I stop struggling, and I stop trying to control things and trying to make things happen and I stop resisting and all is still for a moment, amidst the chaos,  and in this strange silence I suddenly realize that I am creating my own feelings of suffering, that I am creating my own feelings of being a victim. And my life whirls around me at a dizzying speed, yet I am still in the centre of it, but it is not bothering me now, I am observing all my perceived hassles, I am observing all my perceived suffering. Like a fly who has landed on a web, but I choose to remain still, because I know if I struggle I will become more entangled, and life is kind of like that too. We fight life and it fights us back. So much of what we resist persists because we resist it! And we find it difficult in this turmoil to find the right answers, the right solutions, and yet if we choose to accept what is happening, our mind clears and the answers are found so easily.

What if I step into the shoes of those people who irritate me now and see that nothing they do is because of me, but it is because of them? We do things because of us, every behaviour has some kind of payback. So there is no point in ranting about that person that you perceive to be lazy, for I gather they are just doing the amount of work that suits them, and if you are doing more than you feel you should, then the issue is with you, not them. Oh I can hear your screams, but it’s true. We have the choice to put more or less effort into things and we complain that others don’t reach the same high mark and we label them lazy, think about it, it makes me laugh anyway!

What if I accept the things that happen today as just that. We make plans and something happens to change the plan and we get all upset, like the world would end if what we plan doesn’t happen. We hold rigid views that it must be this or that way or else it doesn’t happen. We are so inflexible to life, and we create hassles and problems for ourselves.  Now that I’m thinking this way most of the time I make plans A, B, C, D and so on and I am not attached as much as I was to certain outcomes. I allow things to take their course now, more than I did in the past. And I am very chilled out now. I see life as a series of challenges each day and I ponder as they present themselves to me how best can I work with what I have, now.

This has made a huge difference in my life and I just thought I’d share with you too, and hopefully if you play this game too, you may find that in no time at all, you’ll be so laid back, you’ll be practically horizontal!

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2 Responses to The What if Game

  1. Mary Furlong says:

    “So there is no point in ranting about that person that you perceive to be lazy, for I gather they are just doing the amount of work that suits them, and if you are doing more than you feel you should, then the issue is with you, not them.”

    I love this, thanks Paula!

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