Why Your Mind Won’t Let You Be Happy: Mindful Acceptance

If I tell you the way to happiness is to accept everything exactly as it is right now, I know what you’ll say. “C’mon, get real hippy! I’ll be eaten alive! It’s a dog eat dog world.” First of all, you’re wrong. And second of all, don’t tell my dog that, he’s always hungry and is larger than most of his buddies. I’m sorry if I was a bit harsh when I said you’re wrong, what I meant to say was, “You’re just listening to your mind”. You know the mind right? It tells you that fighting, struggling, wrestling with reality is the only way to make change happen, that things should be different than they are right now. Of course your mind says that.

The mind only maintains its importance by telling you what to do. It gets a kick out of being in charge. Don’t we all. But the mind and it’s struggling, wrestling and fighting are the real source of your pain, so let’s at least talk about something different: total acceptance.

Let’s not just talk, let’s redefine it, because acceptance has been wrongly tagged as throwing your hands up in the air and just waiting for things to improve. That’s not acceptance, it’s just giving up.

Actually, enough talk, let’s do it, let’s do acceptance right here and now. Try this:

Take a breath and notice what it feels like. Notice the sensations of breathing and as you do so, take a moment to watch the thoughts the mind is producing. See if you can watch those thoughts, allow them to come and go, without getting lost in them. see if you can be the watcher of your thoughts.

What did you find? If you can step back and be the watcher, thoughts lose their power to stress you out, leaving you with more energy. The situation may change or not, but either way you can meet it without stress, how nice! Total acceptance means watching your thoughts, not being a doormat, just being the observer of your mind. And that observer is always peaceful, always happy.


One Response to Why Your Mind Won’t Let You Be Happy: Mindful Acceptance

  1. Alexandra says August 21, 2012

    Another great article Oli. How easily and simply you explain things. I find your mindfullness the most useful out of any in my life. Thank you Alexandra

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