Instructions On How To Live A Better Life?

Do you ever feel like if you worked harder, prayed harder or meditated your way to egolessness your life would be better? There are so many instructions/preachers/life coaches (what is a “life” coach anyway?), consultants, self-help books and Yogi’s – all with ideas and instructions on how you can do whatever “it” is better/faster/deeper/smarter/cheaper.

I know that there are better and worse ways of doing things.  I’ve certainly experimented with plenty of effective and ineffective strategies. I’ve done enough dumb things to recognize that there are smarter (and less embarrassing) ways to cope.  But I get the sense that so much of what we hear and read is simply marketing that plays into our insecurities.  I think that, at the heart of many of these strategies is the unspoken, very seductive, message that, if we try harder or smarter or softer or “let it be”, we can gain control over our messy lives. Just follow these simple instructions and you can be….. (fill in your own wishes).

Maybe we just want to get our own way. We repeatedly try to bend the universe to our will and often the universe does not comply (darn!). The universe reminds us time and again that we are not in control very often and, in fact, we are sort of puny in the scheme of things. We see it all the time in nature. There is no control over whether it rains or shines. So why is it such a struggle to accept how little control we have over our own lives? I really don’t know. What do you think?

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