You Can’t Always Get What You Want…

“You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes, well, you might find
You get what you need”

The Rolling Stones

I struggle with the gap between my expectations and my reality. There are things I am trying to achieve, goals I want to obtain, but sometimes they seem no closer for all my effort. Whenever I do start to feel like things are working out, they disappear like a mirage in the desert.

Will I achieve my goals? I don’t know. And it is in coming to terms with “I don’t know” that I have my work cut out for me. For when I feel like I am not making progress I start to think I am incompetent, lazy, or am somehow not correctly dealing with the situation – there is some vital activity I need to do, some attribute of myself I need to change, if only I was capable of seeing it.

Whether this is true or not is irrelevant, at least until I either become aware of some flaw in myself or my approach, or someone/something points it out to me. For all of society’s messaging – working harder does not equal success – I must work smarter. Like a swimmer swimming against the riptide, working harder is only a path to exhaustion and failure. I must somehow train myself to go with the flow. Don’t stop swimming, but swim with the tide instead of against it – even if it is not going in the direction I immediately want it to.

Likewise, endlessly self-analyzing myself or my approach for flaws can and will lead me even further from my goal. This is just another way of swimming against the tide. I face the danger of screwing up effective ways of dealing with reality in a frantic hunt to try something else to explain the lack of progress. Maybe nothing I can do will lead to progress – I need to wait for it to come to me and be both receptive enough, and not exhausted by trying, in order to recognize opportunity when it arrives.

Food for thought…

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