The Idolatry Of A Sense Of Resolution
By Dr. William K. Larkin on June 11, 2012
We assume that everything has a cause, at least one that we need to know, and that every cause has a resolution. One of the things that life will often not give us is a sense of resolution, at least at the time we think we most need to have it, or later in the true form in which it comes.
We want problems solved by understanding them and some sense of resolution to justify whatever is upsetting us. Anything but diverting our attention to getting on with the plans and goals of our lives.
We think that a sense of resolution will somehow fix things. Resolution seldom comes when we want, and when it does, the feelings that seemed to require it are long gone. Resolution never, hardly ever, brings back what is lost. And resolution really does not bring the peace that people assume that it will, if and when it comes.
But there are causes and people that we want to understand us, that we want to make some meaning out of, because we have just invested so, so much time in them. It may even be in a great cause that has failed to meet our expectations.
Separation and divorce are good examples. Almost always, one of the people in a separation wants some kind of resolution and the other person, knowing this on some level, denies any kind of resolution, “withholding” in some way. Maybe they play stupid, maybe they are, and most likely is doesn’t matter because even if you got some sense of resolution, it wouldn’t give you the satisfaction you think it would. We want to hear someone say, “it’s not your fault.”
We want to hear someone give us credit where credit is due, and they find a thousand ways to avoid saying or doing what seems would heal. And you’re hanging around with your emotions on your sleeve still giving them the power. Another person’s last hold of power over us may be in their withholding the sense of resolution they know on some level would give us a sense of justice.
Here is some of the best advice you may ever get. Don’t ever expect a resolution to come from someone with whom you are having a dispute, in a way that you believe it will let you get on with your life. You have given your power away. As hard as you push for it, push against them, feel deprived and used, is as hard as you are fighting against your own future and your own freedom.
A sense of resolution was never promised to you, will never give you what you think it will, and when it finally comes, won’t be as significant as a dribble in getting on with your own life. You have to get on with your own life to begin with. You have to do it without anyone else’s permission on any level, including a sense of resolution.
If you think a big court settlement will give you resolution, you’re wrong. Look at people who get big settlements a couple of years on down the line and see if they have gotten on with their lives, truly forgiven, and let go and are free. If they have, it had little to do with the settlement and everything to do with their own choice to be free and go after what they wanted, regardless of what any judge or jury awarded.
What about a sense of justice? Good luck getting it and better luck in the process of waiting. You can be cheated out of a lot more of your life in the process of the wait for resolution and justice to come to you on your terms. Justice will come for sure, but it will rarely ever come from where you thought it would or should. It will most come from the sweetness of the journey of your own life lived independently of needing a resolution before you could “move on.”
Move on anyway, without it, and you will be in a lot better shape. That is what will give you satisfaction.
CONTINUING EDUCATION FOR COACHES
1) Review your scores on the Optimism Test. Discuss the relation between your scores in the dimensions of Permanent and Pervasive Good and Bad and the need for resolution as it is presented in this blog. How has your overall Optimism Score supported you in moving forward? Tell us your story.
FOR OUR LARGER BLOG COMMUNITY
1) How do you personally view this quote from the blog: “Here is some of the best advice you may ever get. Don’t ever expect a resolution to come from someone with whom you are having a dispute, in a way that you believe it will let you get on with your life. You have given your power away.” Tell us how this has been true for you. Give us some of your story.
kaylie.prov wrote on Thu Jun 14th, 12:01pm:
“WHY” has two main purposes. The first, to discover an ability to better something (such as understanding a science in-depth). The second is an inappropriate question asked to answer something that does not necessarily need to be answered to live a fulfilling life. As a philosophy student, I have debated the questions of reality on a daily basis and I have come to the conclusion that the answer is not always the purpose. In other words, it is not the destination, but the journey. So why not make the best of your life! Do not dwell on the past! Move forward! Thanks Dr. Larkin!
Medman wrote on Sat Jun 16th, 3:37pm:
Why? and this too shall pass. Looking out of the window of next. I don’t need to debate the why of the situation of the day. My goal is to protect my upspiral and keep moving.I like kaylie answer Why Not? Who am I not to have this situation? Keep my focus and keep on going. Just one more situation on the highway of life. A detour. I can recover and in due time the why always presents itself and the why take us some place that leads us to the next thing. The Universe is guiding us and that why is part of the plan. Have fun with the why not that where the discovery of ourself is at. The true power that we tapp into and become better at handling the whys. The whys are the seasons of life. Enjoy the spring and summer as we work the fields in the fall we gather our harvest and in the winter we reflect and we formulate a new philosophy for life. The Why the winter time reflect and change directions.
livestrong81 wrote on Sun Jun 17th, 10:12am:
My Optimism Test scores were a little lower than I originally expected them to be.
My Permanent Good, Permanent Bad and Pervasive Bad scores were all “moderately optimistic.” My Pervasive Good was “average” and my Hopeful score was “moderately hopeful.” For the most part, I experience life as a very optimistic person and would like to higher my scores specifically in area of Pervasive Good Events.
Because I am optimistic, I have been able to move forward through some very painful and hard times for two HUGE reasons. One, I know in my gut that all of the “negative” painful things I’ve experienced will be used for good in the long run. Two, as bad as things can get, I know it is temporary. This has helped me to move forward in times when I have felt at a standstill.
Reflecting on these scores in relation to a sense of resolution, I realize that there are times when bad events happen and I do not take action until it has been resolved in some form, so I can “feel good” about it. That’s what it really comes down to. “Feeling good” about an event, good or bad, by giving meaning and purpose as to why it happened and then I am usually able to move on. I can see how this gives my power away because I will always be waiting for an outside source to “allow” me to let go and move on in an empowered way.
I do very much like the perspective that optimists believe that negative events are temporary and positive events are permanent just as pessimists believe that positive events are temporary and negative events are permanent. Either way, I would like to intentionally grow from my scores of “moderately optimistic” to “very optimistic” by keeping my power and choosing my outcome, letting go, moving forward and creating my own resolution within myself when disputes arise.
Medman wrote on Sun Jun 17th, 2:42pm:
Looking at this article again I realized that one thing that changes everything is the expectation that we approach the situation with. Expecting things and people to be a certain way by trying to control and manipulate the end to our liking. Life Doesn’t Always Give Us What We Want But We Get What We Need. The one thing or the one person to make us move on. I have always tried to live my life as many would say with rose colored glasses and yes things do happen in life that require me to refocus or even take the glasses off. But I know in my heart and in my mind that everything will be okay. When there is pain in the situation some learning and some growing is in order. Pain is one of those emotions that we can embrace and find freedom or we can shut down and let the pain hold us hostage. So I have learned to ask myself the question not how bad can it get? but what is the best that can come from this situation? I move forward on the best note. I must admit sometimes, I don’t have all of the answers but the ability to keep moving is worth its weight in gold. Not to become paralyzed by circumstances and people. What a gift. Living right now in the present. Whatever come next is next but for right now my focus is on what is good.
Steve D wrote on Sun Jun 17th, 5:08pm:
How timely the message is as I go through complete separation with an ex-partner to include and attorney, potential restraiing order, forced sale of propoerty owned together and absolute “no contact” on his behalf.
Yes, with a spiritual intention of wanting resolution and healing for both of us, however that manifests, I do hope for a “peaceful resolution” perhaps to minimize my feelings of self imposed guilt.
I have done everything I can to move forward knowing there could be potential conflict. I have a strong supoprt nettwork to ensure my well-being is maintained and in trusting tn the universal consciousness, will release any perceived outcomes and allow the situation to unfold as it does, knowing that in every way I will be safe, protected, and aligned with my internal intuition (Spirit) gudiing me through.
Mary Garvey Horst wrote on Mon Jun 18th, 4:03pm:
It’s been some time since I took the Optimism Test and I was unable to locate my scores. However, I do recall the “aha” moment that I had during the certification training when the contrast of the measurement between my Permanent -vs- Pervasive Good & Bad was pointed out. At first, I was perplexed by the difference. Slowly and over time, I began to take in the significance of these two differing perspectives. I grew to learn that it really doesn’t matter what is going on externally outside of me, as long as I am experiencing an internal coherence of peace, love, gratitude, joy, and hope. I laugh at how many times this lesson has re-presented itself in my life (divorce, legal matters, family differences, etc.) Blah, blah, blah….
Gratefully, I can remember the moment at which I realized that I didn’t have to give my power away to my former spouse. In that moment, everything shifted. However, I hesitate to list how many more times, I had to relearn the lesson of merely moving on in the face of these challenges. Since my training with ANI, they present themselves less frequently (if at all). I know that it is because my level of Optimism overrides the pull toward a need for justice. This line from the blog article accurately mirrors my experience. - “It will come from the sweetness of the journey of your own life lived independently of needing a resolution before you move on.”
RachelsWell wrote on Mon Jun 18th, 7:00pm:
My Optimism scores were higher than I imagined they would be, except for the fact that I took them while in the UpSpiral. As I noted in an earlier blog post, who and how I am in the UpSpiral is radically different from who and how I am in the Downspiral. Another jolting insight: who I am in the DownSpiral is not the “real” me. These insights emerged from my direct experience of a change in cause and effect: that we have UpSpiral positive emotions by choice “in here, not by what happens to us out there.” (Larkin) I am not a victim of my emotions, I have a significant and meaningful say in the direction of my life.
What does this have to do with thinking that only a sense of resolution will allow me to get on with my life? Well, it’s in the category of depending on outer events and circumstances to make me feel okay or ready to take a new step.
From the blog: “You have to get on with your own life to begin with. You have to do it without anyone else’s permission on any level, including a sense of resolution.”
Around the time I began this course, I learned that a legal matter I thought was resolved was back in the courts. In the past I might have put everything on hold and try to micromanage a situation over which I have little control. Instead I made a conscious decision to not focus on it obsessively, to not give it pervasiveness, to not worry it and myself into the Downspiral of fear and paralysis. Then just last week I did the Emoto Hand Prayer (I thank you, I respect you, I love you) with Dr. Larkin on the video, projecting gratitude, respect and love to everyone involved, including people in the court system whose names I would never know, and that very afternoon I received an email saying the court had rejected the case, there would be no further action necessary; I could, said my lawyer, get on with my life. I was relieved, but it was a calm feeling, a “just so” nod to the greater movement already happening as I change neuropathways - and not the over the top dramatic story I might have told myself in the past while bracing for the next shoe to drop. “A sense of resolution ... will never give you what you think it will, and when it finally comes, won’t be as significant as a dribble in getting on with your own life.”
gabenza wrote on Wed Jun 20th, 6:19pm:
I think I want to know “why” to make the other person wrong. Then I can feel superior, and or move on or resolve the issue. These days I want to be in the place of “loving what is”. I do love that expression of Bryon Katie’s. The incident that comes to mind is from a few years ago. I had rushed home form work, made a smoothie, drinking it in the car and driving another hour. I was to assist the dance instructor with the lesson. I was changing into my dance shoes at red lights, really making alot of effort to be there on time. When I got there no one was there. The lesson had been cancelled. Somehow my name had been left out of the email! I really wanted to know why. I felt unimportant and hurt. I had come further than anybody else would have that night. I wanted to be the most important person to know. I did however go back to putting myself first, and not arranging my life to be available to assist him. I haven’t assisted him lately. Yet I do still enjoy his classes and dancing with him. Ultimately that is what mattered most to me.
palmspringsesq wrote on Sat Jun 23rd, 11:55am:
Not expecting a resolution with whom you are having a dispute makes sense. The ego comes into play and no resolution is possible. If we expect a resolution it is likely to take a long time. Here again it appears to be a whole new way of thinking but makes a lot of sense. I believe that by having positive thoughts and beliefs we don’t really expect a resolution but lean towards accepting the dispute.
Fiat Lux wrote on Mon Jun 25th, 3:53pm:
I was the poster child for this kind of thinking. And even though I knew the wisdom of the words above re: resolution,I did not heed the advice. I was in a marriage that I tried to keep alive for many years. When I would ask my husband (week after week; month after month; year after year) whether or not he wanted a divorce his stock answer was “I don’t know”. And I actually kept making and extending deadlines for this decision to be made (by him). I was hitting my head against the wall for many, many years until I finally gave up and gave myself the resolution I needed. I DECIDED I could no longer live in limbo waiting and then made the decision myself. Fast forward ten years and I wonder “WHAT WAS I THINKING?” We are the only ones who have control over and in our life. No one can keep us in that state of limbo if we don’t implicitly and explicitly agree to it.
And so, to quote Dr. Larkin, in what might be the most profound sentence I have read all week, “I don’t want to tell you who I am in terms of where I’ve been. I want to tell you who I am in terms of where I’m going”. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS LINE. It is magnificent!!!!
There are many things in life we cannot control. But what we can control is our response to each situation we encounter. Moreover, our ability to adapt to ever changing sets of circumstances utilizing our strengths give us the best chance of success in every situation. That is true of personal situations and professional situations.
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