I found this little saying on an herbal teabag. Cookie fortunes come and go, but this little gem occupies a prominent place on my fridge, kept there by a too-large magnet. I am a worrier and (dare I say) a bit of a control freak, and these words remind me that I can’t make everything go my way.
Of course I still try. I think if I give just the right advice, someone will be happy. If I only act the right way or be the right person, everyone will think I’m awesome and love me to death. If I keep my house spotless or lose 20 pounds, the bluebird of happiness will take residence on my shoulder. If I chase something hard enough, I’ll get it. I really think I have this kind of power.
But, of course, I don’t. These efforts, however well-meaning, only show I am trying to change the world around me, or trying to change myself, and wishing on a star for some kind of result. I am not content – I am waiting for something to happen, and frustrated when it doesn’t.
When I am present – when I see things as they are right now and live in the moment – surprises come along. If I really let things come to me, rather than chasing them willy-nilly, they show up. Two beautiful Irish wolfhounds at the park let me pet their gigantic, stately bodies till I sneeze uncontrollably – and this brightens my day. An email offers much-needed work – and the financial picture looks a tad brighter. Someone shoots a random smile in my direction – and I have faith in humanity again.
I think the word “let” in the teabag phrase is the most powerful. Good things want to come over and hang with us, if we will stop stalking and let them arrive in their own time.