I’m a coach. A life coach. I earn my living from helping people with their life.
Which would be great. If I had the slightest idea what ‘life’ is.
Because whatever way we look at it, the life we are living is an apparition, created from moment to moment within our consciousness, shifting and morphing in accordance with the changing energy of mind.
Sometimes our life seems perfect, everything as it should be, we are surrounded by love and opportunity. Sometimes it all looks dreadful, that we are a total loser, our career is a joke and no one cares.
What do we do with that?
I could be coaching someone one day and it looks to them that there are a million things to work on and sort out and solve and fix (‘Clare can I work with you for the next ten years. Here let me pay you upfront.’). The next week, it all looks fine, nothing to fix (I’m good thanks. See you around). (The following week: ‘It’s all f@*ked up. Can I come over?’. )
What is the life that I am meant to help my clients with? It’s not there in any objective, fixed sense. How do we grasp it? How do we pin it down? Trying to fix on things to improve or change seems to be like nailing jelly to a wall.
Often it will look of course as though there is a life to get better at. It will look like there are things to be done. After all, there is food to be cooked and a bed to sleep in and a job to do and rent to pay and a car to fill up with petrol.
And as we see more and more clearly that this life we have is nebulous, transient experience, we know without question that everything we think about the food, the sleep, the job, the rent, the car has nothing to do with food, sleep, rent or cars.
Crazy isn’t it?
And yet realising the truth of this is as sane as we will ever get.
There is no other way of saying it: our life and everything in it, including ourselves, is a dream.
And the fascinating question is, within this dream, knowing that the whole lot of it arises or doesn’t within our consciousness: can we have a better life?
In other words, can this dream of ours be a better dream?
And the answer is categorically, unequivocally, emphatically, powerfully: YES.
And it is a YES because seeing the truth of the dream or not makes, within the dream, all the difference in the world.
Let’s look at this in relation to whether we remember or don’t remember that we are living a dream of who we are, what we do and what is around us.
Who I am
I am a distinct individual, with a definite personality that doesn’t really change. I have flaws and good points. This is the way I am and probably how I always will be. Limits.
I’m looking for the thing I need for me to feel OK. There is something missing. Achievements…? Money…? Friends…? Confidence…? Success…? Esteem…? Lacking.
I am distinct and separate from the world around me and other people. I am an individual and what I see out there is other. None of that has anything really to do with me. Disconnect .
Living the dream of me:
I don’t know who or what I am. There seems to be an essence to me that I couldn’t ever describe in words, or improve on or consciously convey to others even if knew what it was. Who I am seems less and less important. Freedom.
My preferences, needs, wants and desires come and go. In those moments when they seem to matter I own them as the personal illusion they really are. Integrity.
Everything I think about who I am, seems to fall away as I immerse myself more and more in the experience of life. I see there is no separation between my awareness and what I am aware of. I am all of it. Immersion.
What I am doing
I know what I can do and what I can’t. Some things are right for me, others aren’t. There is a lot I will never do. That’s just how it is. Restriction.
I’m constantly thinking about what I should or should not be doing. Whatever I am doing it seems as though I should be doing something else more important. How I feel about myself depends on what I am doing and achieving. Exhaustion.
There are things I can’t help doing. I need to drink or shop or work or eat to feel OK. I have habits and a way of being that are so much part of me that they will never change. Compulsion. .
Living the dream of doing:
I don’t know why I have this life, this body and this dream of doing but while I have it I will make the most of the gift it is. I learn, speak, write, dance, play, march, laugh, sing, study, climb, drive, sit, sleep, lead, make cakes, waves and love… The world and my life is one huge discovery of what I can seemingly do, create and experience. Exploration.
As I see the irrelevancy of insecure thinking I find myself doing what is obvious to do whether that is the washing up or ending poverty. From doing what I know to do now, I simply move to what I know to do next. Present with whatever it is. Excellence.
I know that any idea of an obstacle is created from a state of mind and not from anything ‘out there’. I continue with what I know to do. Why wouldn’t I? Resilience
Who I know
I believe that people have the power to make me happy or sad. In order for me to be OK I need certain people in my life and I have to avoid others. I need approval and praise and respect and I need to avoid criticism. Neediness.
What I think is what any other right minded person would think. Those who don’t agree are wrong. My position and my stand are who I am. Reject my views, you reject me. Conflict.
I define who I am and how I am doing in relation to other people. In comparison I am richer, poorer, more or less educated, a better or worse parent, employee, human being. I need to separate and distinguish myself, protect my reputation and identity. Barriers.
Living the dream of other people:
I know that often it looks to me that I have to change myself, the world or other people in order for me to be OK. I see that others also experience that. I see the innocence of all of us when we do this. Compassion.
I realise that I cannot experience another other than through my state of mind. Everyone around me is a mirror of my inner life. They are my creation, they appear through me. Connection.
I marvel at what I can experience, at what I notice, at the emotions that flow through me. I marvel that I am in this sensory body to experience the living, moving, ever changing perfection of the world around me. I see the overwhelming, extraordinary nature of who I am everywhere I look. Love.
It’s all a dream.
Sometimes we forget it is a dream.
Because of this forgetting we experience limits, lacking, disconnect, exhaustion, compulsion, conflict, neediness and barriers.
Sometimes we remember it is a dream.
Through this remembering, we live in freedom, integrity, exploration, excellence, resilience, compassion, connection and love.
Whether we remember or forget, it is all a dream.
And perhaps the only choice we can ever really make within this dream is whether we orientate our dream life to the remembering or to the forgetting.
In doing so we make the choice between a dream of sanity or insanity, clarity or confusion, peace or suffering.
And that, my dear dream friends, is how this dream life of ours becomes more beautiful, exciting, loving and real than we ever dreamt it could be.