How can we avoid unnecessary drama in our lives? In three words, stop creating it. Sound too simplistic? Read on.
More often than not, we create our own drama during peaceful, calm stages in life.
Boredom. Addiction to excitement. Restlessness. Letting the EGO control our lives.
It's almost as if we strive for peace and happiness, yet when we're living it, it's not enough. Our egos can just be so accustomed to the inflation received during periods of drama -- proving that we're right, controlling people or situations, feeling justified in playing the victim to get attention. This happens when we've unleashed the ego to operate under direct influence of external events, rather than directing it via the world within, better known as our higher selves.
The best way to become aware of an "ego drama in the making" is to recognize and acknowledge it, like a pet, the moment it starts scratching at the door -- don't wait until it's barking and whimpering and ripping up all your furniture to rein it in.
Firstly, how do we do this?
Always remember that your ego is only a tool. It's there for you to utilize, to perform practical tasks. Awareness is nothing more than being conscious of this fact, therefore enabling you to detach from pre-programmed thoughts and emotions so you can observe your actions. Once you can observe your actions, in the present moment as they occur, you're able to respond from your higher-self, rather than react from false, ego based emotions.
Secondly, remember the "ifs."
There are times in life when we wake up, each and every morning, happy and refreshed, only to be floored by an "if." The "ifs" have varying degrees of impact. "If" someone you love is slowly dying due to illness, each morning your happiness feels like it's stolen the moment you remember. "If" you are in the middle of a break-up, you feel sick in the stomach the minute you open your eyes. "If" job loss is looming or you really hate where you're living or who you're living with, that beautiful feeling in the morning of a new day, soon gives way to a new day of the same worrying about the "if."
At least the "ifs" keep the drama-loving ego at bay, to an extent, because we're forced to face the challenge of the "ifs" and learn lessons from them. Another article is needed to discuss how to deal with the "ifs," while keeping the ego in check -- what we want to focus on here, is the times where there are no big "ifs."
The times when no one is sick, you have enough money to eat and live somewhere you like, you have happy relationships, good friends etc. All your fundamental needs are met. Here's where the term "First World Issues" (which applies here to anything other than food/water/shelter) really comes into its own.
If you compare survival issues, such as the need for clean drinking water, against anything in the "first" world that we initially choose to become involved in, then choose to become miserable with, then choose to perhaps inflict on others in some way -- quite simply, words can't even describe the ridiculousness and the arrogance of what we often concern ourselves with.
It would almost be funny if it didn't cause so much suffering. If you're not aware that you're not your ego, you will allow yourself to be dragged around by it, over and over again.
An Example of Creating Our Own Unnecessary Drama
Let's use the term "couch," however you can use any material object in its place: You start noticing stains on the couch that won't come out, the material's ripped, it's old, it's had it. Relatives are coming to stay for the holidays and suddenly you can't possibly cope with the ugly stains on the couch. You need a new couch. You obsess over finding couches, talking about couches, spending all weekend in shopping centers looking at couches. The decisions become numerous -- colors, styles, prices. Then the couch you want doesn't match the carpet, or the blinds, and maybe you just need a whole new lounge room. Then you fight with your partner because he/she doesn't want to spend as much money as you... and on it goes.
If you relate to this, and at times we all do, it means your ego is quickly bored by peace. Irritated by calmness. Frustrated with stillness -- because you've trained it to be so, by constant worry, fear and competition based thoughts. Who really wants to be obsessing and arguing over furniture and money and stains and what the relatives will think, for weeks on end? Truly -- no one. Yet this very fight is re-hashed over "cups of tea" thousands of times a day, across the world.
How do we let such minor issues get so big? The ego is very clever at making mountains out of molehills; it is, in fact, the ego's favorite sport.
We can take the opportunity, in the absence of the big "ifs," to train our egos to enjoy peace, to love calmness, to embrace stillness, to happily accept what is. Out of this comes creativity, synchronicity with the universe and endless opportunities to occupy the ego in a way that aligns with our evolvement and makes us happy. Once we do that, when we are faced with "ifs" and challenges, we're much more equipped to deal with them in body, mind and spirit.
And, one of the big challenges we all have in common is learning how to recognize, then direct, our egos. Once we kick this challenge we notice space opening up in the mind -- space that became crowded and blocked by other people's rubbish. The rubbish that then formed much of the ego.
Dramas directed by a confused, unoriginal, rubbish-contaminated ego are unnecessary and lead only to suffering. We're already in a drama, and it's a huge blockbuster! There're billions of people in it, oceans, mountains, animals, art, architecture, inventions, fire, music, rainbows, stars, planets, universes... chocolate!
Plus, if you're reading this, I'm guessing you have clean drinking water too...
Each time your mind turns to worry or fear, in the absence of an "if," you're probably not dealing with a life challenge, you're dealing with a self-made drama and manifesting suffering the more you focus on it. Your only lesson is to stop, become aware and observe your actions.
Without self-made dramas, life floats to the tune of the universe, and it's this tune that miracles and magic are made of.
Read more at Nicole Leigh West.