Patiently, Not So Patiently, Waiting for the Answer

Right now, there is just one thing I really want to know. Night after night, I’ve asked the answer to reveal itself in my dreams. Through each day I wait patiently (or not so patiently) for the answer to drift in on the next breeze or cross my path in the form of a complete stranger. So far, the answer hasn’t come. So far, I’ve been impatiently expecting it to pop into my life and getting increasingly frustrated that it hasn’t arrived. I have to laugh at myself even as type those last words. Has this journey not been teaching me anything?

Yes, I know I am not supposed to be searching for the answer and getting frustrated when it doesn’t arrive, but come on. That is NOT easy. After about a week of talking myself through this each morning, when I’m left with disappointment that my answer did not show up during the night, I found myself losing interest and hope that I’d ever get my answer. Again, yes, I know…am I really not learning ANYTHING?

The truth is, searching for the answer will never make it appear. Waiting for and expecting information only clouds the path to which it will be received. There are many other variables as well. Maybe the answer HAS presented itself and I wasn’t open to receive it or accept the form in which it came. Maybe I’m not ready for the information or maybe I simply don’t need it right now.

Information and answers are more likely to come with less effort and focus. At first that seems a bit backward, however, it really is sensible. Searching directs all attention in one very narrow scope. Think about a time you lost your car keys, cell phone, or wallet. With only that object in mind, you retraced every step to the last time you recall having it, maybe even two or three times. Panic sets in and the only thing on your mind is an unfolding fairytale of what happened to that object and what would happen if you don’t find it. Finally, you give up, flop down on the couch, defeated. At that moment it appears, partially sticking out from under the sofa pillow, or your four-year-old walks in flying it like an airplane. You are shocked and wonder how the heck it ended up there? You never sat on the sofa or gave your little guy the phone, but there it is.

Clearly answers can come from anywhere at anytime but only when we aren’t searching for them. Although we may think we are looking in all directions, if we are actively looking, we are likely missing a great deal. The more we search, the more we constrict our ability to receive information. We become so myopically focused on one path or result that we miss all the attempts the answer is making to reach us. While I don’t intend to flop on the couch and give up, I release the need to know and have trust that the answer will arrive exactly when it’s meant to and in the form I’m meant to receive it.

Patiently, Not So