April 1, 2007

Are We Having Fun Yet?

girl.jpgDo you tend to make things harder than they are? With your manifesting, too? If so, you have good company.

But just because lots of us do it, doesn’t mean you want to keep it up. How cool would it be if you approached deliberate creation with the simplicity and ease of, say – eating a bowl of cereal? Or playing with the dog?

I remembered how easily we can complicate life when my sweetie took me bowling last weekend. He’s a good bowler, competing with the best in the state, while I’m happy to break 100. He offered to improve my game with a little coaching. No one better to learn from, right?

But before we were even three frames into the game he told me several things I needed to change. “Shake hands with the ceiling when you release, get ‘behind it’ (?), stand on the second dot and shoot for the third arrow (which side do I count from again?), don’t look at the pins (don’t look at the pins? really??), watch the ball after release, and follow through with your arm (what?). I was also supposed to have some sort of “hook” action going on with this new custom ball he’d given me for Christmas.

All right, I was quickly understanding why bowling and beer go hand in hand. In fact, I sent my coach for a drink, and immediately appreciated his absence. How had I bowled all those years doing so many things wrong? I used to think this was fun? Bowling was hard stuff!

I knew I was in trouble when my third gutter ball inspired a bad word right in front of the 7 year old girls in the neighboring lane. (It’s a good thing those alleys are noisy.)

Wait a minute! Swearing in front of little girls? Getting anxious about my score? This was not me. As I looked at what led to the erosion of my good time at the bowling alley, I wondered if I did the same thing with LOA. Was I critical and overwhelming? Did I have a talent for turning the simple and straightforward into an insurmountable challenge? Did I eliminate the fun by focusing on perfecting the technique?

Luckily my coach/sweetie is a good read of my mood, and after lip-reading my four letter word, quickly gave me new instruction: “Forget everything I said, and just have fun.”

“Forget everything?” I questioned. “What about shaking hands and standing on the right arrow and … ?” “Relax and have fun,” he repeated. Okay, he’s the coach.

I gave up all prior instruction, approached the pins with the new command to “have fun,” and finished the game with a couple of decent balls. It was still one of my lowest scores ever (at least I think so – I didn’t really used to keep track of scores, but it seems like it’s been a while since I bowled 63). And I reflected on how easy it is to get caught up in “doing it right.” In improving and proving ourselves, in wanting to impress others, and win the affection and acceptance of those we love. And in leaving the whole purpose of life (having fun!) out of the lives we live.

So my question to you is, “Are you having a good time?” Are you taking the enjoyment out of life by trying to “do it right?” Remember to relax and enjoy the process of life and of deliberate creation. This isn’t as hard as we sometimes make it out to be.

It’s just like in skydiving: when you’re tense, you tumble. When you relax, you naturally arch and freefall becomes graceful, easy and enjoyable. Our default is set to success, so when we stop twiddling with the details that take the “feel good” out of life, we naturally accomplish our goals and live our dreams.

How do you know when you’re on the right track? When you can smile with your 7 year neighbor about another perfectly executed gutter ball. (Expletives excluded.)

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