The metta practice is difficult. Feeling the difficulty of it, though, is the sharpest sign of awareness that things are developing, that I’m in the earliest stages of change. If I were in a comfortable groove then that would mean that I’m not changing, or not using my will against my ingrained habits. The feeling of resistance from within is the most notable sign.

A couple of aspects. I’m back at work now, having to interact with the array of personalities that reappear at the same office as me day in and day out. We’re a tapestry of distinctions woven together to make a company. Although everyone tries to create a smooth social veneer, some people — even those I would consider friends, as opposed to acquaintances — can cause habitual reactions in me to come out that I don’t necessarily like. One guy can’t seem to exist in the present moment. The group of people will be on one topic and he’ll be lost in his own head, and in the middle of one conversation he’ll interrupt to say something completely out of context. My instinct is to make him feel bad for it, but afterwards I always feel like I’m picking on him in public, making him the butt end of a joke. I don’t really want to do that. I also am too harsh with him when we’re one on one, and I’d like not to do that either. This year has been better than last with regards to him, but there’s still much room for improvement.

The second thing. My habits with my previous girlfriend have messed up the expectations for my new one. This new one is more my type, but my previous girlfriend’s insecurity seems to have seeped its way into my interactions with the new one. The old one needed so much attention. This one doesn’t, and it’s throwing me for a loop. What’s really being exposed is my own insecurity with needing someone that I like to like me back. It’s really showed me something about how I deal with perceived rejection. No guy likes rejection, but the real question is why? What’s the underlying basis for this harsh emotion. It’s not like there aren’t other people I could possibly meet out there. I think it’s a control issue. I can’t handle not being in control of this situation or coming up short in managing it. Like I said, this one is more my type. But it could be that I’m not hers. Or I could just have some neurotic tendencies swirling around in my head, playing themselves out.