Chronic fatigue - letting go of outcomes

I may have written about this before but it keeps coming up in my daily life as I try to get things done. Invariably, 'trying' when you're ill quickly leads to a situation where you know you're doing something that isn't helping you but you do it anyway because 'you have to'. On the flip side, if I don't think about what I'm doing and just do things then I do get things done but without the sense of struggle.

So then, what's going on here? Well, quite a lot, and it all seems to center around the interaction between the body and the mind. When I want to get something done this creates a goal in my mind (an outcome), a mental objective that is posed and held in the multi-layered areas of my thinking. I have thoughts like: 'I need to get this done then it's out of the way', 'I need to do this, this and this', 'it will be great when I get this done', and, like it or not, my mind can't stop thinking about it (even when I don't want to think about it). Each thought creates some corresponding tension in my body - my head muscles tighten, my breathing shortens, there's a holding in my body. So now I have an outcome than will release me from this tension, once I manage to get the thing done. This thought further leads to more tension about resolving the tension I am subconsciously putting my self under. Bit of a bummer.

This process is further compicated by having illness symptoms that get worse when I am efforting - I feel more tired than before, my head doesn't work, and so on. All this uses ENERGY of some sort and this energy use is something that is not easily supported by a body dealing with other issues.

On and on it goes until it seems like the only way out is to get the thing done.

Contrast this with the other approach, which is to let go of any outcome and just do things as they arise. This clearly requires a whole new mindset - think chilled out, think beach holiday, think easy come easy go. Since there is no outcome that we have fixated on in our minds then there is no corresponding build up of tension in our bodies that leads to a cycle of energy deficiency. So, we are free. We do things and things get done. We just have to pretend it doesn't matter.


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