Fixing the issue

On a recent retreat, one of the participants recently brought to my attention a very fundamental issue with regard to a habit that I personally had to address in my life.  The need to “fix” or “help” someone.  Fixing someone implies that something is wrong.  And helping someone implies that someone is not capable of doing it themselves. Both have their drawbacks because it may involve the workings of the ego.

We know that health care providers are truly giving and caring people.  We also know that if we are not feeling well or have come into a recent crisis, that experiencing someone who cares and wants to help us is a great relief.  However, there is a difference between assisting or serving someone to become emotionally well and to trying  to help and fix them.  To serve someone on their path to becoming well is to offer them tools either physically and/or mentally so that they become empowered to walk their own path as their own healer. To try to “fix ” or “help” someone’s issue stems from a core belief that you are the healer and taking on the control and responsibility of the suffering person’s journey. It is most likely ego driven.The “fix it” or “helper” issue  is a very challenging habit to transcend among not only health care providers, but also others who have taken it upon themselves to change things that are not in their domain. If you have the “fix it” or “helper” syndrome, go to the space and ask yourself,  “what is driving me to want to fix and help”?  And, “who is doing the fixing?” It can have a deep source.

Years back I had to visit this on my own path. I had to ask myself, “do I want to “fix” and “help” someone because it would make life easier, make me feel better or even valued?” Is it because I perceive the suffering, and my mind does not “like” to see what I perceive it to be? No one likes to see any one or anything suffer. However, what we may find is that the source of suffering might not be what we perceive it to be.  Suffering stems from gripping to whatever is causing the suffering. This translates into physical pain as well as emotional pain.  It is the holding on (thoughts and actions) that continues to cause our disturbance.   We all know that it is not an easy task to let go of what we hold onto even when it causes us pain and misery. We identify so strongly with the disturbance that it changes the way we walk our path.

To recover from the “fix it” issue is to first fix ourselves.  Funny as it sounds, it is true.  The secret lies in our ability to step back and look closely at how we think and what we think.  We need to become aware of the root cause of our fears including our “likes” and “dislikes”. Most suffering comes from our dualistic thinking of what we “like and dislike”, the “right and wrongs”. All of these are just perceived habits that we have been taught.  They are just distractions that keep us gripping to our belief systems.

When we walk the path in our own life we have the ability to walk s a visitor in life and  experience each moment as new.  We find that likes and dislikes are the habits created in our mind that contribute to fleeting ups and downs.  As we train our mind to become still and calm we gain access to our source of happiness and we learn to serve others on our path.  There is no room for our ego to take charge and lead us astray.  The easiest way is through meditation and its practices.