A roadblock named desire
After posting about serendipity, it seems like another serendipitous series of events occurred for me. The next day I stumbled upon a video by RSD Julien about desire. The video changed my outlook on what ‘desire’ is and how it impacts the achievement of goals. Conventionally, our society places a bit of a taboo on certain kinds of desire, such as sexual, but in regard to success, it’s viewed much differently. Above all society expects you to desire things you don’t have if you want to get them, for instance, success. If you don’t desire success then how can you ever be successful? This assumption is where the problem lies.
While ingesting Julien’s content, I slowly began to feel that it all applied directly to me. Julien’s purpose in the video is to explain desire and provide some ways for us to let it go. Although initially, desire may be an initial motivator to start down a path towards your goals, Julien says it eventually becomes an obstacle, “it blocks you from receiving what you want”. Desire implies that you lack something in your current state of being. You are not complete as you are and you need something outside of yourself to fill that sense of lack. Desire means “I do not have. Desire = Lack”.
Your desire can even become a part of your identity. The ego will latch on to that desire, equate that to your entire being, and will hold you back from ever getting what it is that you desire. In fact, the longer you feel desire for something and the stronger that desire is, the harder it is to get out of the place you are, that place of lack. “If you got what you desired so badly, you wouldn’t experience the desire you’re so accustomed to…the desire that has become who you are,”. Additionally, desire typically never ends. The ego wants more and more. This is why we should let go of desire.
Julien mentions other attitudes that are more conducive to getting what you want. The big one was ‘intent’. When we have an intention, an expectation, or a conviction, we can create a process to manifest that, without having a need for the result of the intention. Intent derives from the Latin verb intendō (present infinitive indendere), which means ‘I stretch, I turn my attention to, and I focus on’. Nowhere in that origin is there a sense of attachment to the outcome. You have something that you want to focus on, that’s it. In contrast, desire stems from the Latin verb dēsīderō (present infinitive desiderare), which means ‘I want, I wish, I miss, I lack, I need, I lose’. How did desire become the way to get what we want?
I’ve realized that maybe I don’t pitch as well as I think I should because I desire that state of pitching well too much. I lack it and my ego has latched on to that feeling. Now it holds me back. Instead, from now on, I intend to pitch well, but whatever results from my next outing, it will all be good. I don’t need to pitch well or even pitch at all to be happy. The last 13 months have shown me that. “We’re just so used to being motivated by fear, it’s impossible for us to even think that ‘maybe I could be motivated by love'”. Julien even says that sounds cheesy, but seriously, coming from a place of love is the only wholesome way of approaching anything in life. Fear pollutes and destroys our actions, even if those actions are good ones. I’ll take this out to the ball field and into other areas of life. We’ll see what happens 🙂