Lazy is a word that I’ve never identified with. Just like you, I’m a take action kinda woman, figuring out what needs to get done and not wasting any time doing the work. So it caught me by surprise when I recently read Pema Chodron’s definition of lazy. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Pema, she is an American Buddhist nun, author and teacher. In her book, The Places that Scare You, she defines 3 types of “lazy”:
Comfort Orientation – when you avoid being inconvenienced. Like circling the parking lot for that rock star spot instead of parking far and walking. Or maybe it’s dodging an honest conversation that needs to happen with someone in your life, so you settle. Basically it’s avoiding anything outside of your comfort zone.
Loss of Heart – when you dive into victim mode. The “poor me” or “I’ll never get it right” thoughts populate in your head. Totally forgetting you have everything you need to help yourself.
Resentment – when you go into a “couldn’t care less” attitude because the world is messed up and is not giving you what you deserve. So why bother? Pass me the bottle of wine. . . .
Have you ever thought of laziness this way?
Pema goes on to summarize that we use 3 different strategies to combat our habit of lazy:
1) We criticize ourselves for indulging in comfort and shame ourselves for not doing what we need to do.
2) We indulge in our laziness by owning up to it and using it as an excuse “This is just who I am”. . .
3) We ignore ourselves and numb out to avoid looking closer at what we’re doing.
Well, here’s the GREAT news:
There’s another option that Pema suggests we try that’s simple –
And that’s to –
Practice not resisting whatever you’re being lazy about.
Criticizing, indulging and ignoring may seem easier in the short term, but when you get to the point of not getting happier year after year you might want to tap into not resisting what you’re resisting.
So what are you being lazy about?
Not moving forward with a midlife career change that stirs your soul but scares you?
Not taking the time to invest in a relationship that might be the best thing ever?
Not making small changes to improve your health that may have unbelievable effects on your well being?
Here’s to Option #4 –
Stop resisting and just do it.
Positivity & Possibility,