What started my spiritual journey 20 years ago was being unhappy and wanting to be happy. Sufferings of various forms was what motivated me and what kept me motivated over the last 20 years. The problem I have now is that the growth attained over the last 20 years has left suffering in minimal supply, and, as such, I find I am lacking in motivation to deepen and expand my practice. I know that there is so much joy and peace to be obtained, but that is a much more gentle allure than the kick up the arse that suffering provides. I have even found myself welcoming a bit of trouble into my life, and even actively seeking out a bit of pain, just so I can be spurred on. That doesn't seem too healthy!
In contemplating this I feel like a whole new way of thinking is needed. Of course there will always be painful situations in my life, but it's also clear that the challenges and sufferings that were in overwhelming supply 20 years ago (caused by my poor quality mind) are much, much less now... I just can't depend on sufferings to motivate me anymore. It will still be there, but I need a more consistent fuel now to keep me ticking over.
I thought habit would help. I got into a very dedicated routine where I was managing to do a lot of meditation each day, but my heart wasn't in it. I'd just carved out a groove that was easy for me to maintain, but it was lacklustre. I miss the fire that I used to have inside of me when I had much suffering in my life. I was so enthusiastic and dedicated to relieving my suffering and finding some form of happiness. Now I'm in a very in-between state. I have minimal suffering, i.e. a mind that doesn't make suffering for me, but also minimal happiness... I'm just fairly contented.
Has anyone else found themselves in this position? How did you solve it? I suppose one thing I can do is just persevere with my practice until I have a taste of a greater joy and peace which then might motivate me onwards. Maybe there's underlying beliefs within myself that I need to address too. I certainly had low self esteem for much of my life, so maybe some remnant of that makes it hard for me to pursue greater happiness and joy, as if I don't deserve it...?