When you’re not honouring the present moment by allowing it to be, you are creating drama – Eckhart Tolle
Do we create drama all by ourselves? In a word, yes. The funny thing is, more often than not, we do this during peaceful stages in life.
Boredom? Addiction to excitement? Restlessness?
It’s almost as if we strive for peace and happiness, yet when we’re living it, it’s not enough. We’re just so used to the ego-inflation received during periods of drama. The ego proves that we’re right, controls people or situations or feels justified in playing the victim to get attention. We tend to unleash the ego to operate under the direct influence of external events, rather than directing it, via the world within.
The best way to become aware of an ‘ego drama in the making’, is to recognise it and reign it in. Like a pet, we need to do this the moment it starts scratching at the door of our minds. Rather than wait until it’s barking, whimpering and ripping up all the furniture.
Learning to observe when and why you create drama in your life
The ego is our self-image and it’s characterised by labels, definitions and judgements. When you’re conscious of the fact that it’s not the ‘real’ you, it’s possible to detach from pre-programmed thoughts and emotions so you can observe your actions. Once you observe your actions, in the present moment as they occur, you’re able to respond from your higher-self, rather than react from generally false, ego-based emotions.
Remember that ego-based emotions and thoughts aren’t original, as you’ve picked them up from society, parents, the media, educators or friends. With such a jumble of opinions, ideas and identities rolled into one, it’s little wonder that it’s easy to create drama, when you let it rule your life.
Taking note of the ‘Ifs’
There are times in life when we wake up, happy and refreshed, only to be floored by an ‘If’. The ‘If’s have varying degrees of impact. If someone you love is suffering from an illness, each morning your happiness feels like it’s stolen the moment you remember. If you’re in the middle of a break-up, you feel sick in the stomach the minute you open your eyes. If job loss is looming or you hate where you live, that beautiful feeling of a new day soon gives way to a new day of worrying about the same ‘Ifs’.
However, at least the ‘Ifs’ keep the drama-loving ego at bay, to an extent, because we’re forced to face challenges and learn lessons from them. Another article is needed to discuss how to deal with the ‘Ifs’, while keeping the ego in check. What we want to focus on here, is the times where there are no big ‘Ifs’, in life.
Recognising that life is too good to deliberately create drama
When you and your loved ones are healthy, there’s enough money to live well and you have happy relationships, all your fundamental needs are met. If you compare this situation to one of someone experiencing poverty – in that there’s limited drinking water or food – it’s hard to imagine why we often perceive our lives to be so full of drama.
With all our needs met, we’re basically choosing to experience most of the problems that arise.
An example of this is repeated relationship mistakes, whereby we become addicted to the drama of romance. We often turn away from the peace, stability and self-contemplation available upon leaving such relationships, because our ego wants to stay there for the fight.
If you’re not aware that you’re not your ego, you allow yourself to be dragged around by it, to the detriment of your happiness.
This happens in everyday, routine life as well. Let’s use the term ‘couch’, however, you can use any material object in its place. The story goes like this:
Relatives are coming to stay for the holidays and, as you’re cleaning up, you notice a few stains and rips on the couch. You try to fix it but nothing really helps. Suddenly, you feel like you can’t possibly cope with the state of the couch and what other’s might think of you because of it. You need a new couch. You obsess over finding couches, talking about couches and spending all weekend shopping for couches. The options are astounding, with so many colours, styles and prices. Then, the couch you want doesn’t match the carpet or the blinds. Maybe you just need a whole new lounge room. This results in fighting with your partner because he/she doesn’t want to spend as much money as you.
The more you create drama, over the smallest of things, the bigger the follow-on effect becomes.
In this example, we’ve chosen to obsess about an ego-related purpose. And there are so many ego-related purposes, because of addiction to self-made drama. Things like petty judgements that create fights with friends or family, excessive focus on how you, or someone else looks, over-expectation and feelings of entitlement rather than gratitude or obsession with material gain.
If you relate to this, and at times we all do, it means your ego is quickly bored by peace. Irritated by calmness. You’ve trained it to be so, by constant worrying and fear-based thoughts. In reality, who really wants to be obsessing and arguing over furniture, stains, money or what the relatives will think?
This is total and complete self-created drama, because the ego is very clever at making mountains out of mole-hills. It is, in fact, one of the ego’s favourite sports.
Training your ego to enjoy peace
We have to take the opportunity, in the absence of the big ‘Ifs’ in life, to train our egos to enjoy peace, love calmness and embrace stillness. Out of this comes creativity, synchronicity with the universe and endless opportunities to occupy the ego in a way that aligns with our evolvement and makes us happy. To do this is simple, when you introduce meditation, mindfulness, creativity and the practice of daily gratitude, into your life
Then, when you’re faced with serious challenges, you’re much more equipped to deal with them in body, mind and spirit.
Learning how to recognise, then direct, our egos is one of the biggest challenges we all have in common. Once you kick it though, you’ll notice space opening up in your mind. This is because when you create drama directed by a confused, unoriginal and judgemental ego, you’re using all your energy to maintain it, rather than fostering clarity and wellbeing.
If you think you create drama mainly out of boredom, just remember you’re already in one, and it’s a huge blockbuster! There are billions of people in it, oceans, mountains, animals, art, architecture, inventions, fire, music, rainbows, stars, planets, universes…chocolate!
Plus, if you’re reading this, I’m guessing you have clean drinking water too…
Each time your mind turns to worry or fear, in the absence of an ‘if’, you are not dealing with a life challenge. You’re dealing with a self-made drama, and manifesting suffering the more you focus on it. Remember to stop, become aware and observe your actions.
When you no longer create drama, life floats to the tune of the universe. And it’s this tune that miracles and magic are made of.