Growth is all around us at the moment. Blossom is on the trees, leaves are emerging on the oak and ash and parks and gardens are flourishing.
At times, we can see growth in our mindfulness journey too. We may see a difference in our attitude and willingness to practice mindfulness. We may notice the changes and growth we have made in understanding ourselves and others.
However, it can be tempting to think that growth will continue at a constant rate. This can never be the case and we will know that we have grown in our practice when we accept and understand this and just experience whatever is happening at the present time.
We can also become attached to the idea that we need to strive to be “a better person” and that this is part of our personal growth. I personally believe that if you let go of all your preconceived ideas about striving for transformation and trust in the mindfulness practices, you will naturally grow.
Below is a poem that is frequently quoted in mindfulness books and 8 week courses. It sums up this concept so well and is a great inspiration to many on their mindfulness journey.
What if There Was No Need to Change?
By Oriah Mountain Dreamer (Harper Collins)
What if there was no need to change?
No need to transform yourself
Into someone who is more compassionate, more present, more loving or wise?
How would this affect all the places in your life where you are endlessly trying to be better?
What if the task is simply to unfold,
To become who you already are in your essential nature:
Gentle, compassionate and capable of living fully and passionately present?
What if the question is not
“Why am I so infrequently the person I really want to be?”
But “why do I so infrequently want to be the person I really am?”
How would this change what you think you have to learn?
What if becoming who and what we truly are happens not through striving and trying
But by recognising and receiving the people and places and practices
That are for us the warmth of encouragement we need to unfold?
How would this shape the choices you make about how to spend today?
What if you know that the impulse to move in a way that creates beauty in the world
Will arise from deep within
And guide you every time you simply pay attention
How would this shape your stillness, your movement.
Your willingness to follow this impulse
To just let go
By Suzanne Fysh, May 2017