Do What You Can

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I was listening to a Touch of Peace video by Nayaswami Jyotish wherein he was talking about a restless meditation and how he approached it. An excellent watch for anyone who has ever tried meditation and struggled. Listening to it, this line  “Why worry about things you can’t control, do what you can” immediately reminded me of parenting.

We as parents worry about so much, about how our children will shape up when they grow. Will they be able to keep off drugs? Will they be able to face moral challenges? Will they be able to sustain themselves? Will they find love and have good relationships? Will they fit in the society? Will they take the spiritual path? So on and so forth. But how much of these things are under our control, can we directly regulate them? The clear answer is No, we can’t. We wish that these things do not happen, we pray but can we guarantee any of the above. No and so we shouldn’t worry about them.

So am I suggesting that we should just leave it to the will of God passively and just keep wishing that everything turns out well. Not at all. Far from it the other part of the advice is “Do what you can” i.e. we should do what we can in the present moment. Let me explain it with a few examples. For eg. If my child is throwing a tantrum can I model peace and calmness so that my child knows what it is to be calm in face of uproar. Instead of wanting my child to fit in the society, can I start celebrating their quirkiness. If my child has done something wrong instead of catastrophizing and sermonizing can we show compassion in the moment.

Can we ourselves start developing more patience, more calmness instead of always blaming the other person for our moods and anger. Can we start a practice of meditation. Can we model emotional valence when our child comes home and tells us about his first experiment with alcohol, cigarettes. Can we start giving them when they are still toddlers, that space and sense of safety which will make them share their experiences and troubles when they become teens. Can we spend more loving time with them and build the connection.

Can we model a healthy relationship for them, less bickering and complaints and more understanding. Can we model a life of less wants, simple living and high thinking. The point I am trying to make is do not fret about the big things. But see what can be done in the present to make the big things fall in place and do them. Act rather than fretting about the big things without making substantial changes that can ease those worries. That is not true caring. True love makes the sacrifices and changes needed in the best interest of the loved one.

So let us leave the big worries at the feet of the Divine Mother/Higher Power, while we get busy with steps we can take. As we start taking these steps actively, one step at a time, May Her Grace be upon our efforts.

About the Author Dr. Mona Choudhary Consultant [email protected]parentingmantra.com, [email protected], founding [email protected]

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