Fear can seem a big part of living on this planet. And living from fear is not fun, joyful nor can it lead us to genuine happiness. There are a million theories and gurus to follow, to seek answers, to research and delve yet there seems a common theme running through all of them. Acting from love or fear are really our only choices as humans. Either we are afraid, and if we notice our thoughts that will help inform us. Are we anxious? Jealous? Envious? Greedy? Needy? Abusive? Hungry for power over others? Those are fear based feelings that come from our thoughts, and lead us to act, behave, and think in fear based ways. We even might convince ourselves it is love. That might be our trance? Ever notice our thoughts? How fast they are and can squirm around into a kind of familiar mindset or default position to blame or feel a victim or being right? Are we flexible or inflexible in those moments? It isn’t easy to just notice them and not act on it, because we think what we think is real.
As humans we have the capacity to change our own minds. Watching a Netflix documentary “Stutz” provided some interesting life contemplations. The documentary is produced by and about a 40-something actor’s lessons learned from his therapist Philip Stutz. The tools discussed are a positive life line because they can be immediately understood and used if we are ready and willing.
Part of moving forward in our lives seems to be about letting go of being right. Lots of what can hold us back is the idea that life is fair or supposed to be just. Many times we are right yet no one acknowledges it, and what we seek in that rightness never materializes. It is hard to move forward or keep moving, yet waiting for others to acknowledge we are right may never happen, and may keep us stuck and unhappy. That is a fear based place to be.
Love, of oneself and love of others is about being in this world with an open heart. That seems to require being vulnerable (which yes is courageous). And choosing every day to bring our positive life force to the table. Having a healthy life force, according to Stutz, is when we pay attention to 3 things like a pyramid starting at the base with our relationship to our bodies (eating, exercising), then our relationship to the people in our lives/having good social connections, and the relationship to ourselves (our inner workings, emotions, thoughts, words etc)
Being awake at the wheel while being willing do the constant work of being a better human is our challenge. Are we up for it? Ultimately it seems we are on this earth to live a love based life as the only way to have the joy and contentment many of us seek. The Stoics speak of it in terms of living a life of virtue is essential to having real happiness and meaning.
Love based living is a daily practice.
Link to Netflix article on Stutz documentary