Doing and non doing a good balance

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Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby Scouser » Tue Aug 19, 2014 7:17 pm

I guess I would like to know how to feel good about non doing ?

My situation, very briefly, is that I work a regular 9-5 and follow my true passions ( music - composing - writing - performing - recording ) after work. I have been a professional musician in the past, but found performing all the time, to be tiresome, after a number of years, as I said above my main passion is in my studio at home, with the view to my songs etc making a second income.

Now to get anything done, after I have finished a hard days physical work, requires dedication and commitment, on a very regular basis. However when its something you love, you do it, and it is a pleasure to do so.

Problems seem to arise when, I come home tired or just don't feel like doing it, my mind at this point goes into overdrive, "your lazy" "you won't reach your full potential if you sit and do nothing" "people who succeed work hard to do so" etc etc it's like my mind totally works against me, a bit of a paradox, I feel guilty if I don't do something to further the cause, and don't much enjoy it if I force myself to do so, although not always, sometimes just starting works. But I would love, to feel happy about doing nothing, this has to be an important part of the process in creating ? It seems very difficult to get a balance, i'm sure by having that voice in my head saying "come on sit down and play and see what you can come up with" has lead to some of my most creative periods.
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby EnterZenFromThere » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:10 pm

Hi Scouser,

As I'm sat reading this I'm looking outside and can see my mum frantically cutting down a hedge that has got overgrown. Her mouth is moving as she's talking to herself. She looks stressed. She says she's tired and complains about that but she'll come in for a few minutes, talk to herself, play solitaire on her ipad (she's racked up tens of thousands of games - haha) and then go back outside because 'it must be done'. She doesn't know how to stop. I get the feeling it's a way of distracting herself from herself. She's afraid to be alone with herself. To get to know herself. Because she's afraid of what she might find out. [thats the way I see it anyway..]

I like what you say about creativity coming from periods of calmness. Einstein said something similar. I know a few ways of getting to that inner stillness that have worked for me. We all have our own ways to get there. I have a feeling they are hard wired into our unique DNA. So my way may or may not work for you. Maybe it'll need a bit of exploring and tweeking on your part to customise it to suit you. Making it individual is the best way in my opinion.

Bringing your attention into your body is an excellent gateway to your inner stillness. With your attention in your body you mind loses it's source of energy and slows down. The breath is the most effective way I've found. Bring your attention to the feeling of the air moving through your nose and mouth and entering and filling your lungs. Feel the same as it leaves. The mind probably won't feel happy about the silence this produces. It'll probably call you stupid for trying this, distract you with random memories or future plans, but you can see those thoughts as the defence mechanisms they are and gently return your attention to your breath. If that is easy and comfortable you can extend your awareness from your breath into your sight and look around the room without any thoughts. You can do the same with your hearing and all your other sense. Without thoughts these senses have room to breath and feel much more alive (in my experience).

There is a gentle art to bringing the senses in that may not be appropriate. See how you feel about it. I find the more I gently incorporate into my awareness the more stable that inner peace becomes. If it is too much, just keep your attention on the breath. I use that as my anchor into my inner peace. It's gentle, effortless, and graceful.

There are other ways but I come back to this one a lot. Exploring it your own way will inevitably lead to the best way for you, specifically.

Let us know how it goes.

Love,

Jack
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby dijmart » Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:58 am

EnterZenFromThere wrote: She says she's tired and complains about that but she'll come in for a few minutes, talk to herself, play solitaire on her ipad (she's racked up tens of thousands of games - haha) and then go back outside because 'it must be done'. She doesn't know how to stop. I get the feeling it's a way of distracting herself from herself. She's afraid to be alone with herself. To get to know herself. Because she's afraid of what she might find out. [thats the way I see it anyway..]



I wonder how she would react if you offered to help? and, if you don't mind me saying, my observation from what you wrote is, "the way you see it" seems like a lot of assumptions? Have you ever asked her about any of them?
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby Scouser » Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:33 am

I do breathing meditation quite regular, and that certainly quiets the mind. Maybe it's a good thing the mind wants to create rather than sit a around doing nothing ? Obviously everything is balance and one should feel good whether doing something creative or relaxing. It just seems like doing nothing can become a habit as it requires no effort, whereas creating requires lots of individual tasks and disciplines for it to come together.

I suppose it would be easier to reconcile non doing if it in some way contributed to the overall picture. I suppose one could say everything comes/stems from quiet mind non doing, but in my experience it comes from doing, open mind, creating a playful environment.
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby EnterZenFromThere » Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:49 am

Haha I thought someone might ask that. Yes I went out just after I wrote that and helped her and I had helped her get started on it. It doesn't feel so full of assumptions from my end, but of course I don't know all the details of her perspective. I have known her for quite a while longer than just this one event in this post :P

I've spent a lot of my life trying to work out my mum. She has a lot of anxiety problems which limit her life. She has clausaphobia worse than anyone I know. She can't go in planes, buses (though she's working on that), trains, a lot of buildings, anywhere underground. She also has social anxieties. These have led to tinnitus and insomnia that have been so bad she's had nervous breakdowns and needs psychotropic medication. My dad left when we were little so she had to raise us alone and I don't think she could handle that. My siblings and I have all had various psychiatric disorders throughout our lives which I guess is partly down to this situation.

So all this inspired me to study medicine and then psychology in an attempt to understand these situations better, and also in the hope that somehow I could help her. Now I find myself in a constantly evolving peace and happiness and I'd like to offer it to her if I can. But I found it isn't as simple as just telling her I've found this thing and her going along with it. If I'm gentle about suggesting ways to be more easy, she can find it helpful if I time it right and am very careful with my words. But if I try more forcefully (as I've tried when I've got frustrated), she closes up and gets angry (not unsurprisingly).

On the whole I'm just letting it go these days. I try and be nice and offer kindness. Sometimes I get annoyed with her, there's a whole history there - our house has been pretty hellish at times and there's a lot of negative energy holed up in each of us about it. I'm learning how to forgive us both for all of that and move on. Despite the occasional outburst, the change has been enormous (moving from barely being able to stand being together for a few minutes, to spending a week together without incident). I don't think she's noticed the change in our relationship (if she has she doesn't act like she has) but my brother and his wife have, which is nice. They have three beautiful kids that I didn't see much because I had so many of my own issues. With them largely gone I get to enjoy being a part of the family now which is wonderful!

Oops I went off on one a little bit there :P so, yes I have tried asking her about these things, but I've found it's too much for her if I'm direct so I have to be gentle and time it very well if I try and bring her attention into her issues to resolve them. On the whole I feel it's not my place to interfere. She's made these issues for herself so that she can learn from them (that's how I feel all our problems are seen from the higher selves). I can play a small part, but it's really all about her. I'm aware I can make it worse by sticking my nose in and getting too close to the nerve, so I'm content to just offer human kindness. She's trying to get on the buses by going a few stops every couple of days and building up until she's comfortable making it to the next town. She was talking to a psychologist on the phone but their sessions have run out, so I'm going to take over and we'll see how that goes.

For me at this time, it's a lesson in watching someone suffer and respecting their journey enough that I don't barge my way in thinking I can help only to make it worse. This too will pass, one day.

Thanks for the questions, talking through it is like eating something nutritious.

Love,

Jack
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby EnterZenFromThere » Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:16 am

Scouser wrote:I do breathing meditation quite regular, and that certainly quiets the mind. Maybe it's a good thing the mind wants to create rather than sit a around doing nothing ? Obviously everything is balance and one should feel good whether doing something creative or relaxing. It just seems like doing nothing can become a habit as it requires no effort, whereas creating requires lots of individual tasks and disciplines for it to come together.

I suppose it would be easier to reconcile non doing if it in some way contributed to the overall picture. I suppose one could say everything comes/stems from quiet mind non doing, but in my experience it comes from doing, open mind, creating a playful environment.


Yes, i agree. For me, Inner peace isn't about being at peace while you sit meditating for an hour a day, it's about living in a constant peace that you bring to every aspect of your life. I see balance as a very important thing too. Exploring the inner peace and the more spiritual side of life is great, but not at the expense of our human life, of being productive in the ways that we enjoy, or completely shutting down the mind because it is seen as an enemy rather than a tool. Our body, mind and soul can synergise in the most amazing ways. I like to experience the inner peace as the background to my daily activities. It reminds me that this life is an amazing ride. That I don't need to fear, and that everything can be easy if I go with the flow of life.

Brining inner peace into your life doesn't have to be via sitting down in silence and doing nothing. It can be done at any time, in any place, doing any thing. I find it adds to the productivity of life, rather than taking away from it. Sounds like adding a bit of inner peace to your activities could be what you're looking for? Take the edge off the harsh criticism of the thought patterns that are there at the moment and replace them with an easy going, but still very much productive and creative space?

Love,

Jack
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby Scouser » Fri Aug 29, 2014 12:17 pm

Well im no closer to being at ease with my non doing... It seems fine in the short term ( hrs ) but not so good in the longer term ( days ) I guess it feels no different to procrastination..
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby dijmart » Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:41 am

Hi Zen,

I'm glad you didn't take what I said as a judgement, because it truly from my end was about pointing something out and seeing if you had also noticed. I get that you know your mom well with all her neuroses and such. However, my bio mom also has deep issues and is an alcoholic, there have been times, in the past, that I thought I knew better for her, gratefully I have released all of that. What a weight has lifted off my shoulders. She never asked for my help anyways. Now if she asked, that would be different. I'd probably have lots to say.

got to go, my phone is ringing.....
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby dijmart » Sat Aug 30, 2014 1:46 am

I'm back....

So all this inspired me to study medicine and then psychology


So, what happened with this?...

our house has been pretty hellish at times and there's a lot of negative energy holed up in each of us about it. I'm learning how to forgive us both for all of that and move on.


I forgave my mom, eventually and silently, she didn't need to know how much I resented her and her ways. Now, there isn't negative energy and when she screws up, eventually, as we all do, whether we're a drunk or not, I'm not directing anger from the past into the present situation.

I've found it's too much for her if I'm direct so I have to be gentle and time it very well if I try and bring her attention into her issues to resolve them. On the whole I feel it's not my place to interfere. She's made these issues for herself so that she can learn from them (that's how I feel all our problems are seen from the higher selves). I can play a small part, but it's really all about her. I'm aware I can make it worse by sticking my nose in and getting too close to the nerve, so I'm content to just offer human kindness.


I would say, if you can find it possible to not judge her choices in a right or wrong way, even if they seem dysfunctional to you, you will be much happier. I have had to do this myself, my mom's a drunk and has been for a long, long time (40 yrs approx). She enjoys it, doesn't wish to change and never has, like you said...it's her problem and she created it. For me I'm at peace about it now. If she ever came to me and wanted help, I'd help, but until that day....I leave it alone now. I too offer kindness and I also no longer judge it. I have and do make boundaries though, she can no longer call my home phone (so my family doesn't hear her drunk dial, her number is blocked) she can only call my cell, she can't drink if we're together or I'll leave. I find these boundaries perfectly reasonable.

For me at this time, it's a lesson in watching someone suffer and respecting their journey enough that I don't barge my way in thinking I can help only to make it worse.


I can understand this and agree. Sometimes we do more harm then good, because we want things "are way" or want to make changes for someone when they don't want to change at all and we can windup hurting ourselves in the process. Again, I think it depends if they want help.

Thanks for the questions, talking through it is like eating something nutritious.


No problem :wink:
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby vinay » Fri Dec 05, 2014 5:12 am

Scouser wrote:I guess I would like to know how to feel good about non doing ?
...
Problems seem to arise when, I come home tired or just don't feel like doing it, my mind at this point goes into overdrive, "your lazy" "you won't reach your full potential if you sit and do nothing" "people who succeed work hard to do so" etc etc it's like my mind totally works against me, a bit of a paradox, I feel guilty if I don't do something to further the cause, and don't much enjoy it if I force myself to do so, although not always, sometimes just starting works. But I would love, to feel happy about doing nothing, this has to be an important part of the process in creating ? It seems very difficult to get a balance, i'm sure by having that voice in my head saying "come on sit down and play and see what you can come up with" has lead to some of my most creative periods.


In the past few months I have begun to appreciate the phrase Eckhart uses - psychic pollution. When there is an internal fighting going on in my mind about I or others should and should not do, I am creating pollution. How does this pollution compare with the pollution my car creates? I don't know. But looks like it has a huge multiplier effect. It affects people around me and it spreads when I type email/forum replies in a state of anxiety. Hence, I have begun to appreciate non-doing a lot more. Can I really reach full potential while the engine that produces psychic pollution is firing away?
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Re: Doing and non doing a good balance

Postby smiileyjen101 » Sun Dec 07, 2014 12:58 am

My situation, very briefly, is that I work a regular 9-5 and follow my true passions ( music - composing - writing - performing - recording ) after work. .... my main passion is in my studio at home, with the view to my songs etc making a second income.

Now to get anything done, after I have finished a hard days physical work, requires dedication and commitment, on a very regular basis. However when its something you love, you do it, and it is a pleasure to do so.

Problems seem to arise when, I come home tired or just don't feel like doing it, my mind at this point goes into overdrive, "your lazy" "you won't reach your full potential if you sit and do nothing" "people who succeed work hard to do so" etc etc it's like my mind totally works against me, a bit of a paradox, I feel guilty if I don't do something to further the cause, and don't much enjoy it if I force myself to do so, although not always, sometimes just starting works. But I would love, to feel happy about doing nothing, this has to be an important part of the process in creating ? It seems very difficult to get a balance,


As you've noticed the 'problems' seem to arise when you come home from 'work' and are tired - needing rest - and your brain is arguing with that, and in stress the balance is lost and your 'passion' becomes more 'work'.

It even has the rider that not as a possible or potential natural consequence, but as a 'purpose' that would make you feel 'successful' about your love, your passion, it has the rider of the 'view (the 'projection) of making a second income.

ET When you want to arrive at your goal more than you want to be doing what you are doing, you become stressed. The balance between enjoyment and structural tension is lost, and the latter has won. When there is stress it is usually a sign that the ego has returned, and you are cutting yourself off from the power of the universe.


So the ego calls you lazy when the reality is you are tired. - pure and simple tired, arguing with the ego only makes you more tired.
The balance comes by listening not to your ego but to your senses beyond that, aware of reality, aware of cause without excuses or excising it, going with 'what is' rather than what 'should be'.

Body is tired = rest, relax. When rested the passion can return without the overlay of stress, resentment, resistance etc.


ET: (once cut off from the creative power) Instead there is only the force and strain of egoic wanting, ...

... and hence the attention on how/what 'successful' people must do - rather than say an intriguing melody or captivating lyric urging you to give it life - expression - which is how it feels when one is riding creative energy it's not about 'you', it's about the expression the thing that is coming through you into life. This energy carries us, we don't have to push it uphill in slog and grind - I'm sure you'd know this from the times when you've been enthused with creative energy.

ET: .... and so you have to struggle and 'work hard' to make it.
.... There is also a strong link between stress and negative emotions, such as anxiety and anger. It is toxic to the body...

In this energy level the thoughts I'm lazy etc etc emerge.

The practical thing is to notice if you're making enemy, obstacle, means to an end of a thing, person or situation - if you are, stop doing what it is you are doing because it is its own energy source and affects the quality of impressions and expressions. I don't mean tiredness or incapacity in excuse or avoidance, but figuring out the 'signature' of which is which --- if one is not in a state of acceptance, enjoyment or enthusiasm stop doing what you're doing, because what you're actually doing is creating suffering for self and/or others.

My Dad used to say 'if you're going to do a thing, do it properly or not at all'.
That has one connotation - what does 'properly' mean to us at different times- bring it to a recognisable, discernible level of quality in experience focus. BE balanced, fair and honest in areas of awareness, capacity & willingness.
Merge that with ET's thing about acceptance, enjoyment, enthusiasm - do it in those states, or not at all.
And if the answer is not at all do/be that in acceptance, enjoyment and/or enthusiasm, aware of the quality of the experience you are creating of/in this moment.

Busy busy busy has two consonants that resonate bs bs bs :wink:
i'd love to hear your song on that, you've already written half the lyrics in the OP :idea:

ET: Unlike stress enthusiasm has a high energy frequency and so resonates with the creative power of the universe.


What comes out of enthusiasm is not fuelled by want or ego, nor can it be measured by it, it can only be and be known as a co-creation with the universe. The beauty is in the experience of the co-creation and so cannot be measured by the tangible output as scaled by some other measure of judgement.

It's those moments when you finish playing something and say 'wow' knowing that you did not create that, you just allowed it flow into being.

i'm sure by having that voice in my head saying "come on sit down and play and see what you can come up with" has lead to some of my most creative periods.


Because in that state 'energy' of acceptance and willingness, it was never about the 'making a second income'. It was no longer work and you were only focussed in the moment. You were not focussing on the outcome and the quality of the outcome was not limited by your egoic senses.

Likely you would have felt like the hole in the flute through which the Christ breathe flows....

The quality of the stuff that will fulfill the second income will be at the same energy level as the stress that is creating it----- means to an end --- kind of level in experience - which is why you feel the stress and resistance in creating it. The stuff that is about 'you' is 'work'.

So it's not even really about resistance to doing nothing, it's about recognising the quality of your own states of being.
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