It takes a lot because there is a momentum behind us. When I stop, I sometimes feel I am too far gone so why on earth would I stop if it means facing up to the direction I am headed. Continuing on whatever track I am on feels easier.
Stopping means I would need to do something different, dopamine is hitting from all sides. Stopping means I’ll lose the buzz of those neuro-chemicals. From this this point of view there simply very little that makes sense about stopping.
Rather go and get to some other point where all this matters less, maybe at the end of the day when I am reminiscing about what a busy day I had.
But what if stopping didn’t mean change. That I could stop anywhere and say to myself, whatever interesting behaviour I am in the midst of, that somehow it’s all ok. Slow down a little, invite curiosity and pay attention without the weight of needing or wanting to find a more perfect person at the other end of it.
Instead, oh here I am. Isn’t that interesting. Gravitating in this or that direction, being distracted, emotional or frustrated in some way, pleasure seeking or avoiding, doesn’t matter. It’s all food for consciousness. And to me more interesting that anything, as I am less afraid of the content so it goes that I am less afraid of the stop because I know I am bound to face the momentum of the past and there is space inside to hold it all. But and this is a big but, a little bit at a time. When I push myself to look too hard at the content of my thoughts, feelings and sensations it’s easy to become overwhelmed, despondent and uninterested. Gentle awareness works best.
Sometimes it really is ok to leave the world exactly as it is and rest in the awareness that never changes. There is too much too enjoy!