A friend of mine recently shared an amazing piece of writing by Pema Chodron on Hopelessness and Death. This sounds as if it would be something depressing but it’s actually very uplifting.
Hope can be a barrier to success. Think about it… if you spend all of your time hoping, then you’re not getting on with shit. It’s easier (in the short term) to sit back and hope for a different future, to hope that one day you will be a different you, hope for a knight in shining armour to swoop in and rescue you from your shit life or to hope for your luck to completely changing resulting in a different life than the one you currently have. This just doesn’t happen. Sitting back and waiting for great things in life to find you will not get you where you want to be.
Hope and fear come from feeling that we lack something; they come from a sense of poverty… We feel that someone else knows what’s going on, but that there’s something missing in us, and therefore something is lacking in our world.
– Pema Chodron
If you are relying on hope to get you through then you’re not likely to be a success. Hope is not enough. Instead of hoping, why not look at yourself and figure out where you’re lacking. What is it that you need to learn or do to get ahead. What feelings of inferiority or worthlessness do you need to confront so that you can actually get on and get shit done? Stop hiding in hope and face your fears. Face your hurdles. Face your own limitations.
Hope can lead to misery as you’re sitting back waiting for life to happen to you rather than going out and making your own dreams come true.
Hopelessness or a lack of hope means you have faced your own reality and are no longer lying to yourself… you know exactly who you are and what you want to be. Only then can you be free to create, soar and succeed. Hopelessness is the ultimate freedom and we all need more of it.
If you want to read more of Pema Chodron’s ideas you can read When Things Fall Apart: Heartfelt Advice for Difficult Times.