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The "Virus of Discontent"

Some years ago I coined the term, the "virus of discontent". It refers to a habit of the ego mind to believe that if we or our lives are somehow not living up to our expectations then there is either something wrong with us or with our lives. It leads to a pattern of chronic self-judgment, disappointment, complaining and pessimism. It is often a part of chronic depression. When we fail to live up to our "ego ideal" or if life doesn't give us what we want right now, we feel less-than, unworthy, angry and stuck. We want to DO something to be in control.

The antidote to this malaise is to first and foremost develop an attitude of acceptance of ourselves and our lives as they are right now. That does not mean helpless resignation. It means understanding that we are where we are and making peace with that reality. It means, as AA teaches us, to accept the things we cannot change and change the things we can.

We will instinctively know when it is time to make a decision or a change if we listen to our deep inner voice. It is usually obvious when such a time has come. Our ego mind may tell us all sorts of "shoulds" or resist change out of fear. Our spirit tells us our truth. When we believe and can trust that our lives are being spiritually guided by a power greater than ourselves who has our greatest good in mind, we can let go and let things unfold as they will. We will know when it is time for us to take action and when it's wisest to let things be. Then we can relax and enjoy the ride.

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