My wife had a bad weekend.
The Cubs lost game 1 in the NLCS on Saturday. Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone on Sunday in his game against the Minnesota Vikings. And then the Cubs fell behind 0-2 in the NLCS after Justin Turner hit a walk-off home run Sunday night.
"You know," I told her, "being a fan is just an attachment. Because you were rooting for the Cubs, your joy was dependent on their success. You were not free to appreciate the joy of the Dodgers. Thus, you suffer."
She quickly schooled me on the true meaning of suffering.
I learned my lesson.
Freedom doesn't mean I can't be a fan of the Cubs or the Packers or any other sports team. Rather, freedom means that I can accept the disappointment that comes when these teams lose.
Disappointment is a part of life. Only by accepting it will we be free to experience true and perfect joy.
Take time today and be mindful of your disappointments, no matter how small or insignificant.
When you note a disappointment, identify the expectation or desire that was unfulfilled or frustrated. Identify your emotions. Are you sad? Angry? Try to locate this emotions in your body--for example, if you feel angry, you might notice that your jaw and fists are clenched. This will help you remain objective in observing your emotions.
Finally, accept and welcome your disappointments. What do the tell you about your values and desires? What do they tell you about your fears and cravings?
Your disappointments can be your greatest teacher. Give thanks for the lessons that your disappointments have taught you.