We have all been there–we get attached to the results. I would say, not only attached but Superglued! This has been the theme of many of my clients as of late.
The problem with attachment is that it is the root of much of our pain and frustration.
Here are some examples:
I was at the airport, on line to board the plane. In front of me was a grumpy woman trying to juggle her small children and her carry-ons. I offered to help her and she muttered a yes. After helping I was surprised that there was no “Thank You”. After all, I was being a good person, right? I should go down in the nice person hall of fame! I smiled at myself as I realized that my actions had attachments, rather than doing the right action because I chose to.
This happens with holding the door for someone, letting someone in front of you in the car–we wait for the thank you wave, the nod, or smile. The need for acknowledgment takes the pleasure out of your action.
What about the serious situations–painful experiences to either yourself or a loved one? A family member, co-worker, your boss, or job. We say: When things improve, then I will be happier. We expect another human being to act with a bit of humanity. We think: Is that too much to ask? What a schnook I’ve been! Or, I could just spit! (Oops, that’s my mother talking, and no, she never did spit!)
I get it. However we all know that not everyone chooses to change their behavior, and they might be clueless. We behave decently, but they do not. We replay these situations over and over again, trying to figure out what makes them tick. Meanwhile they are happy campers 🙂 and we are not :(.
Please Ellen, what’s the solution???
Okay, I am happy to say, there is one. Begin to become aware of when you are attached. Take a breath, plant your feet on the floor, and simply notice. You might even say to yourself; Hmmm, I’m attached. You might find some of the smaller stuff humorous.
For the big stuff, ask yourself: Do I really want to go down this road again? How is this serving me? I will step out on a limb here–it is not serving you, no matter how right you are.
Remember that attachment to results is robbing you of joy. The next time “You could just spit!”, then just spit, get it out of your system, and go about enjoying your day.
I must finish with a special thank you to my mother for her great sayings. Thanks Marjorie!