We all crave a feeling inside when things are “just right.” It’s the feeling of “perfect fit,” and we can experience it in many arenas: the meal that perfectly satisfies us, the outing, the response from another, the way we have just spent some free time. That Just-Right feeling allows us to relax more deeply than perhaps anything else. It is complete satisfaction.
I think this has a healing influence (especially on the nervous system), so I support finding healthy ways to experience it. Fortunately, getting to Just Right is simpler than you might think. You don’t need an expensive trip to the south of France. That Just-Right destination is no further than the distance to your heart.
Listening to Your Deeper Desires
When you have free time (and free time is a must!), you may find yourself asking, “What shall I do?” Watch carefully where you go for the answer. You can go to habit or to should, you can choose to go unconscious in one of your favorite indulgences (often this will involve binging of some type), or you can use it as a moment to check in and ask what you want. Just the question “What do I want?” takes you out of the harness of daily life.
We’re used to thinking of wants as the more indulgent side of life, but we need to understand something: Giving yourself pleasure is not necessarily indulgent. Indulgence is doing something that feels good in the moment but you know is not in your best interest. It’s like eating too much and having a tummy ache. There is a price to pay, even if it’s a more subtle feeling of being disappointed in yourself.
Desire and pleasure are part of our steering mechanism. Yes, there are desires that are more defensively motivated, often to escape an uncomfortable feeling. Most addictions are just this. The “just right” doesn’t get to mature and ripen because our need to clutch is right there on the heels of it and we’ve gotten caught in the object of our wanting.
Listening for our deeper desires are like turning to your soul and asking, “What is important to you?” The pleasure that comes when we follow these desires is beyond this surface loop of craving and fulfillment.
The more deeply you check in with yourself, the more you can meet yourself deeply. Check in with the surface, and you get a surface response. (e.g. I’m hungry.). Check in with your soul, and the response will lead you somewhere else.
It’s About Attunement
Attunement is being tuned in. It is a feeling process that is somewhat difficult to put into words because it is not an emotion and not necessarily felt on a sensation level (although for some it is). It is more intuitive and energetic. Think of a mother who is so connected that she knows when her baby needs something. (Or a lover!) That’s attunement. We attune to others, and as adults need to learn to attune to ourselves.
When you check in with yourself and ask what you want, it is not the particulars of the answer that are important, but this acknowledgment and consideration, this tuning in. Attunement is an act of intimacy.
There is no shortcut to this. What the mind wants to do is say, “I know. You really liked it when you sat in front of the fireplace and watched the snow last weekend,” but mind can only catalogue what was true in the past. Mind cannot truly attune. And one thing I’ve learned for sure about the Just-Right feeling is that you can’t get there by following a formula.
We get great feedback in this process, because the better we tune in, the more we feel nourished (assuming we follow the guidance).
Just Right As A State of Consciousness
It is important to recognize that this “just right” is not the “just right” of perfectionism, which is controlled by a set of criteria and run by the inner critic. That’s about evaluating performance.
This Just Right isn’t about performance or ideals but rather is a state of consciousness. You have to be completely present to feel it. If your mind is off in other things you won’t be all here, which you need in order to feel the beauty of the moment.
Just Right is a state of consciousness where we’re not judging, pushing away, clinging, achieving, but just here in this moment in intimate contact.
So quieting the chatter of mind is critical. And when we stop listening to the inner commentary, a rather magical thing happens: the conditions for Just Right start expanding! We aren’t so bothered by not having perfect silence or temperature or this person you’re with not matching up to some ideal. Just Right becomes more portable!
We can then be bathed in the relaxation that a baby gets from perfect holding. Here the “holding” is our harmony with the present moment.
Give yourself the gift of harmony by learning to steer using this Just-Right feeling.
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