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The Sting in the Tail of 'Happy' (Day 107)



Positive reactions. Thus far, we've been looking at our negative reactions (frowny face โ˜น๏ธ). Today we're starting to look at the other side of the coin โ€“ our positive reactions (smiley face ๐Ÿ™‚).


These won't necessarily feel like reactions, not like their negative kinfolk anyway, because we're getting what we want. We like what's going on. There's no need to fight reality, like there is when we don't like what's going on.


This is a good state to be in! You should enjoy it...while it lasts. Because at some point, whatever is happening that you like (e.g. your ice cream, relationship or life) will be over, and your positive reaction will stop, as a result. This is the 'sting in the tail' of this sort of happiness...it doesn't last, ever. ๐Ÿ˜Š And that's ok, because that's the ever-changing nature of reality, and mindfulness is all about accepting reality as it is. But, of course, we often don't accept that change/loss. We don't like that the good thing is gone.


PRACTICE

Our task is two-fold:

  1. Be aware of this inflection point, notice as things change from "I like it!" to "I don't like it!". When you're feeling good, keep in mind that this too shall pass. You might even get more appreciation in your moment because of this.

  2. Accept your change in emotional state from positive to less-positive and more neutral. This new state might feel like a bit of a let-down, but over time you will come to find that the neutral space is a required eye-of-the-needle gateway into real and lasting wellbeing. Remember to ground your act of acceptance in a physical gesture โ€“ a deliberate and measured breath.

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