Lately I’ve been hanging with the Queen of Kindness, one of the personas of the Queen of the Universe. She has gifted me with a sense of clarity, some R&R, a greater sense of peace.
But I happen to know that, under her surface, lies the Red Queen.
Some days I can even believe that she’s in charge of the future and it should go her way.
Off with their heads! She shrieks when the Universe doesn’t cooperate with her plans.
Bless her heart.
She’s so innocent in her attempt to hold things together. She sincerely believes that she has The Big View, that she can predict the future and avoid mistakes. She whips herself into shape, continually. And then, as if that’s not painful enough, it becomes her task to do this for almost everyone around her.
It’s a big job. And The Red Queen believes that someone’s got to do it. Namely her.
Here’s how it usually plays out: Problem. Solved. Problem. Solved. Problem solved. Problem solved but solution dropped. Overwhelm. Problem still there. Rinse and repeat.
I notice that all the problem solving in the world won’t make the people around me act or feel the way I think they should. Even when I try to solve the problems in their behavior or relationships. Even when I try and try.
All I get from that is heartburn. And burn out.
There is an incantation that takes away the power of the Red Queen. It jumped out at me in a novel over a year ago, and has taken root:
”I am tired of trying to hold together things that can’t be held. Trying to control what cannot be controlled,” says the main character of The Night Circus.
It’s an obvious truth, but it’s a bit of a blind spot for the Red Queen.
The reality is that it IS tiring to try to manage all the parts of our particular circus. It’s also true that we have a choice. When we remember.
How to remember: that is the question. It begins with the question of what is in your control and what isn’t. Which brings up the very useful question of what is my business and what isn’t. I have discovered over the last ten years that the answers to that question unfold gradually, like a Zen koan. My business? Their business? God’s business? (also known as the Way of Things…) The answers just keep showing up, one of the great gifts I have received from the Work of Byron Katie.
I invite you to stay tuned into your business, the things that are in your control, in the coming weeks. What I’ve noticed is that thinking I know what others need can take me right out of my business. What takes you out of your business? There’s no time like now to look….