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Stay on Target
by letting go of attachment
“Train yourself to let go of everything you are afraid to lose.” -Yoda
I had a brief flirtation with motorcycles in my youth. In my twenties, I bought a 1988 Honda Hawk GT. It was modified with a Holeshot exhaust and and lowered handlebars. It was a loud, growling beast that was exhilarating and terrifying to ride. The first thing they teach you in motorcyclist training is to avoid target fixation.
Target fixation is an attentional phenomenon observed in humans in which an individual becomes so focused on an observed object (be it a target or hazard) that they inadvertently increase their risk of colliding with the object.
This also applies energetically to our ability to manifest results in reality.
When setting goals and targets, there is a fine line between intention and attachment. When we are too focused on something or someone, and attached to the outcome, target fixation can get in the way. Many people use pain as a motivator, but this is generally a bad strategy, because pain, fear, and anger as a motivation tends to manifest exactly what people are afraid of. Fear of abandonment pushes people further away. Fear of failure creates self sabotage. Fear of rejection creates addictive validation behaviors.
Now, there’s a time and place to push, to grind, to make something happen. However, if it feels like you are trying to force things to happen, it is a good idea to dig deep inside and listen. The universe always delivers little messages, and if something isn’t flowing, feeling good, and feeling fun, it’s helpful to feel into the resistance and learn when to transmute that resistance and when to walk away.
This does not mean to seek comfort or not to take action.
“The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.” -Joseph Campbell
Discernment is the key. Timing is important. Fear isn’t the motivator, but courage is necessary. Courage comes from the same place as compassion, gratitude, and love… the heart.
Is it a Yes:
In your mind. Do I have all the information I need?
In your gut. What am I afraid of?
In your heart. Does courage feel right in this situation?
In other words, study with humility and devotion, and examine your feelings. Sometimes, compassion is a trap. Make a decision to create systems to achieve the results you want long term. Instead of attempting to force an outcome through sheer force of will, systematically determine habit forming strategies to improve awareness, knowledge, and ability to execute. Practice. Be discerning about the people you surround yourself to support you. Cultivate growth mindsets. Find joy. Have fun.
Understand the obstacles, then aim at the spaces between the obstacles, rather than focusing on the obstacle.
Otherwise, you might end up like this kid.