Be happy, gregarious, inquisitive…whichever adjectives you want, whatever qualities you feel are true to you. Actually be them. Embody them through the way you walk, the words you say, the foods you eat, the clothes you wear, the company you keep. And know that in being you, you are enough.
Somehow, we westerners have forsaken “being” in our relentless pursuit of “doing.” It’s as if, over time, we harnessed the parts of us that are active and productive, and started rewarding and lauding them without limit. A successful business person, therefore, must be the CEO of not one but five companies; a successful student attends Harvard undergraduate and graduate schools; a successful mother raises perfect kids while also keeping a clean house, making dinner and performing 110% at a job.
As a result, our society is tired. Tired of doing, doing, doing from the time we wake up and glance at our to-do lists, until the time we respond to the last email on that list, which might be just 5-minutes before bed. And, yet, even in our sleepy, adrenal-depleted, coffee-fueled state we desire to do more. And so, instead of trusting the sensation of sleepiness and simply sleeping, we study it (with millions of dollars in research) and pay for it both with money (buying medication, digital wrist bands) and our health (as sleep deprivation is associated with concerns from diabetes to heart disease).
Mind you, nothing is wrong with tiredness, research or private enterprise. Just like nothing is wrong with “doing.” But these days, “doing” has extended beyond its healthy and happy limits, and has overtaken the part of our lives that relates to “being.” Doing and being—like right and left, heaven and earth, wrong and right—are two sides of the same coin. Both sides exist simultaneously in an “and” (versus “or”) relationship, so that each side balances the other.
It’s akin to our body’s nervous system, with the “fight or flight” response helping us sprint from the lion, and the “rest and digest” response for restoration thereafter. Both responses are needed… Read more here