Buddha called ego “the little house-builder” for it’s uncanny ability to grow a simple concern into a crushing fear. A sideways glance from my boss means a pink slip is on the way. An abnormal number on my physical report means I’d better get my affairs in order. An unexpected bill in the mail has me living on the street. The little house-builder wakes me up in the middle of the night to review all the things that will probably go wrong and, of course, how everything is my fault.
On the other hand, it is natural to have concerns. Concerns focus my attention and prompt me to take positive action - to do the next indicated thing. Certainly I’m concerned about the welfare of my friends and family, concerned about my health, concerned about my finances and concerned about the state of the world today. But I suffer when a concern morphs into worry or dread. When that happens I am cut off from spiritual guidance, I short circuit my intuition and I’m baffled by situations instead of handling them. Without my internal guidance system, I’m liable to make matters worse by seeking relief. I don’t have to drink, but there are many other unhealthy ways to distract myself from the fear.
The key for me is to realize that one more time my magic magnifying mind has catapulted me into the future. Every single thing that can possibly go wrong will go wrong tomorrow, next week or next year. The program of Alcoholics Anonymous has given me tools to get back to the present moment. Sharing about what’s going on with another alcoholic, calling a newcomer, and getting my butt to a meeting all work to get me back to NOW — the only time I can connect with my HP. Today, right now, in this moment, I’m OK. I’m safe. Sure I have concerns, but because the termites of fear are not gnawing silently away at my peace of mind, life is good. Very good