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Why You Can’t Seem to Solve Your Problems

We all have many imagined problems.

Or, at least, most of us do. Maybe you don’t. Maybe you’re mega-ultra-enlightened and you no longer have any sense of any problem whatsoever.

But the rest of us imagine plenty of problems.

And we try to solve those problems.

Ultimately, we’re unsuccessful in solving the problems.

Maybe we seem to solve one problem. Maybe two problems. Maybe three. Maybe a hundred problems solved.

But still, the problem isn’t solved. Because there’s still a problem.

I’ve asked this of enough people and gotten confirmation, so I’m fairly confident that this is a common experience among us.

The problems present as all kinds of things. Not enough love. Not enough money. Not enough respect. Not enough health. Not enough fairness. Too much burden. Too much responsibility. Too much fear. Too much greed. Other people’s behavior. Our own behavior. Politics. Career. Relationships. Spouses. Children. Parents. Siblings. Neighbors. The weather.

Whatever the problems seem to be, we can’t solve the problem underneath the problem. Because no matter how much money or love or respect or kindness or ease we get in life, it’s never enough. No matter how much we free ourselves of our obligations and responsibilities, we still feel dissatisfied. No matter how many things we acquire. No matter where we go. No matter what we accomplish. No matter what…it never fully solves the problem.

Or maybe we have a problem that we can’t seem to solve. Chronic health problems that don’t resolve no matter what we try. A feeling of being unlucky or cursed that we can’t shake. Maybe no matter what we do, we struggle with money. Maybe no matter what we do, we struggle with anxiety, fear, anger, frustration, unworthiness, lack, etc.

But all of that is looking in the wrong direction and we end up asking the wrong questions like “what’s wrong with me?” or “why me?” or “what do I have to do to get things right?”

Here’s why we can’t ever really solve the problem.

It’s because the problem is not a problem. It’s the gateway. It is the invitation to the fullness of life.

As long as we try to solve the problem, we overlook the simple fact that we’ve never fully, truly, actually been still and restful for the split second necessary to directly meet our own experience. Instead, we’re always squirming, trying to avoid it. We give attention to thoughts about it – all speculation, all based on past conditioning, all based on our ideas which we picked up along the way…

But we don’t actually stop and find out *directly* what this is.

Not another concept about it. Not a name of it. Not a story about it. Not what it was a second ago or what it will be tomorrow.

Now. This. As it is. You. Your intimate experience of yourself, of life, before, during, and after all thoughts, all resistance, all reactivity.

Here’s what I’m proposing to you. If you’ve reached a point where you’ve had enough of the struggle and seeking for solutions. If you’re done with the suffering of seeking for future betterment. If you’re exhausted to the bone and ready to set down the armor and the arrogance of everything you think you know. If you’re ready to finally admit that you haven’t managed to win…

Then open to this: stop looking for an answer. Stop looking for a cure, remedy, solution, or any form of salvation.

Whatever is here. Whatever experience. Whatever sensation. Whatever image. Whatever fear…

Just open to it. By setting down the armor. Setting down the seeking. Setting down the effort.

Be still for a moment. Be vulnerable. Naked. Raw. Open.

As you are.

All of you. Exposed.

And don’t move.

Let everything else move as it does. The wind in the trees. The thoughts and sensations moving in the body. The birds singing. The heart beating.

But you…you be still. Which you are. You cannot be otherwise. So this is not a restraint.

It’s just that for a moment, you can recognize the stillness that you already are, that is already present. That is already effortless.

Whatever happens, remain quiet for now. Don’t move to understand. Don’t grasp a thought. Don’t try to figure it out. Don’t get somewhere. Don’t get something. Don’t solve. Don’t do anything.

Just for a second.

Be still and see what is. You are. This is.

Does this require anything? Are there any conditions for life to be?

If there is intensity, let there be intensity. If there is boredom, let there be boredom. If there is anger, let there be anger. If there is fear, let there be fear. If there is numbness, let there be numbness. If there is nothing, let there be nothing.

Whatever is, let it be. And just see that it is. You are.

And there are no conditions for this. It is.

Now what?

Now you have a choice. Either remain with this recognition of life as it is, open, free, now, unknown. Or give attention to the next thought.

You don’t need to stop thought. Or get rid of it. Or make the thoughts positive.

Just see that it is all happening. And that life is already without a problem.

Typically, the next thought is something like “But this couldn’t be the answer!”

And that’s right. This is not the answer. Because there is no answer. If we are seeking for an answer, we’re already starting from the assumption that there is a problem.

We don’t need an answer or solution or remedy or cure.

Life doesn’t have a problem. You and your life are not a problem.

But you can’t see that clearly as long as you’re looking for a solution. And that is why everything you do to solve the problem only reinforces the problem.

This is paradoxical. But it is true.

The real answer is not an answer. It is prior to the problem. Already here. Already available.

Always intimately accessible.

P.S. – Tomorrow I’m co-hosting an introduction to Access Points with my friend, Chanan. The Access Points program is wonderful and I truly want¬† you to learn more about it. It is a simple, direct process with huge support that helps people to ease into this recognition of life as it is – open, free, and problem free – like nothing else I’ve ever seen. Join us tomorrow (Friday) for the meeting, and we’ll share with you the process and give you a taste of how you can begin to apply it in your life right away. Register here ->¬†

Joey Lott

Joey Lott is the author of numerous books, including The Best Thing That Never Happened and The Little Book of Big Healing. He lives in southern Vermont with his wife and children.

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