- A lack of confidence. I have forgotten who I am, doubt has crept in. Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche once said, “we think we are rocks, but we are gold.” He didn’t mean that we should feel like we are special, or that we should use this information to build up our ego into thinking we are better or more important than anyone else. He meant that we all, every being, are precious, have basic goodness, and that our true nature is compassionate and wise. We simply need to get out of the way and manifest, embody it. Susan Piver describes it this way, “Confidence is the willingness to be as ridiculous, luminous, intelligent, and kind as you really are, without embarrassment.”
- A need to be loved. When we are babies, we depend on others to care enough about us so that they will care for us, feed us and keep us safe. We would die without their love. Somehow as an adult I haven’t been able to let this go. I find myself doing things and not doing other things in an attempt to earn the affection of others. It is too important to me, still, that people like me, that I don’t make them uncomfortable or irritated, that I give them what they want, need, like, believing that they will then do the same for me. I forget that I can be love, take care of myself, that I can be my own best friend, save myself.
- Being stuck, in old habits, ways of being. For example, when I’m tired and what I need is real rest, maybe even sleep, what I do instead is either push through it, do more, try harder, and get overwhelmed, or I numb out, shut down, watch TV or eat, reject rest, resist the letting go.
The bigger issue: confusion. A lack of confidence is confusion about who I am, what I’m capable of, what I’m allowed to do and be. A need to be loved is confusion about my own capacity to be love. Being stuck is confusion about reality, an illusion about my ability to move, what’s really stopping me, holding me back. I am my biggest obstacle.