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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

- Secondary Gain -

What are you getting from your problem that invites it to remain?

“I hate being fat!  I feel lumpy and lethargic and uncomfortable!  Why do I keep eating what I know will make me “fatter?” 

I can’t stand living in this mess!  I hate stepping over piles, not being able to find what I want when I want it, and I’m tired of looking at it all!” 

But I don’t change. 

Why?  Am I lazy?  Not at all.  I get lots done in other areas.  I am perfectly able and confident in many other areas of my life, but why do these trip me up?  (Pun intended?) I’ve learned that there are reasons for everything.  Even the ‘bad’ things that we are ‘stuck’ in, are serving us in some way.  Otherwise we would never continue in their practice. 

For instance:

I remember hearing a client talk about their issues with weight.  He spoke about the comfort that he gained when he sat down with a huge meal like his mother used to make him .  He received comfort, a feeling of safety and a trip back to a simpler time 0 escape.  He also spoke about his worry that he wasn’t as faithful in heart as he wanted to be.  He loved his wife, but always struggled with self-worth, and if he was ‘buff’ he would be more appealing, get more attention, and it would be more difficult to keep his mind clear of temptations.  He received: Safety, a cushion of protection, a perceived defense against infidelity.  He mentioned that he liked the ‘jolly’ persona that he was labeled with.  He felt more comfortable at parties being the ‘jokester’ and laughing about his weight was an often-used intro to conversations.  He received: A place in society that he knew.  An audience.  A deamon he was familiar with. 

Beginning to see?

What would a ‘mess’ give the one who wanted to be free of it?  Why didn’t they just toss?  What in your life is bugging you?  Can you make a list of the POSITIVE things this NEGATIVE thing offers and rewards that keep you shackled to its demands?  Are there other ways to receive the same rewards?  Can you step away from the Negative and create a new positive expression that gives the same or similar rewards?  If you can, you are well on your way to freedom from whatever it is that you wish to unhook yourself from.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Must I do ‘Enough’ to earn the right ‘To BE’?

My missionary Elder Kevin Steed took this in Idaho
Earning the right.

“I have to get xxxxx done, and THEN, I can enjoy—(reading with my children, going fishing, reading a book, painting, writing or calling a friend. . . ) something that nourishes me.” 

I’ve felt like this.  I’ve given myself so many lists and must-dos and put in so much time trying to feel un-guilty about Being who I am, that I’m afraid that I’ve forgotten who that is.  I’m just beginning to remember.

As I age, I realize how unimportant all the ‘important’ things seem to be.
Is it really necessary to earn the right to be be?

Aren’t we much better off knowing what nourishes us, what our deepest convictions and most honorable selves are in line with, and then from that base. . . doing what items naturally flow out of them?

I’m not a new-age sort of fluffy, feely, individual that is unaware that one must make a living, must find ways to create income and safety, but I am one who has learned that sometimes we put too much energy and importance into things that perhaps, just perhaps, aren’t feeding, nourishing or enhancing our very deepest values or creating the life that we truly want and can embrace.  We can have both.

Consider being, and allowing that to create your to-do list rather than the other way around.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Risky Business

Only by taking risks can we hope to accomplish
the extraordinary –

Spark – Circ de Soleil
- John U. Bacon, Lyn Heward

When you were little,  did you ever get in a tree swing and kick off as high as you dared?  Did you feel the surge of reaching for the sky and free falling backwards into who knew what? I did.  It was risky, the branch could break, there could be someone behind you, you could fall, the seat could break. . . but we did it anyway.  Anyone regret it?  I don’t.  

Now however I have a bit more  trouble kicking high and free-falling.  In Circ De Soleil, they take risks.  They do something crazy, they try new things and we (at least those who have been fortunate enough to see a show) benefit from the amazing experience.  Nothing however will happen, if they don’t first get on the swing, kick off into the unknown, and well. . . see what happens.  

Sometimes we do fall.  We can put our hand on hour chin and say, hummmmm. . . wonder why that didn’t work?  Then try again with adjustment.  If it still doesn’t work, are we a failure?  Nah.  Just eliminated another wrong answer!  

I don’t know about you, but I want something extraordinary.  I want to be able to step beyond the ordinary and come to a place where I know I’ve kicked as high as I can, used all the rope I have available, used the sturdiest branch and touched my toes to the sky.  

How about you?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Don't Push the River

A river flows.  That is what it does.  It follows its own natural path and ends where all rivers ought to end, in the sea.  If I jump in, and push it, it will still do what it will.  I may be able to change stones, build a dam, even dump in tons of soil to adjust where I think it OUGHT To go, but like so many have found out, eventually water will win. It will go the way of the flow.  

Is your garden continually climbing over the fence and into the neighbor’s yard? 

Does your car continue to sputter and whine when you put in the cheaper grade of gas?

In life we tend to forget that our lives are like that too.  This isn’t to say do not make goals, or do not try to guide your own life, but simply consider when things feel like a struggle, that perhaps they aren’t ready to happen.  Are you pushing your flow too much to see that the natural movement will be exactly in the direction that is best?  

Stop and listen to the rhythm.  Draw in great gulps of fresh air and smell the direction your life is calling.  Look far into the horizon and notice the signals that are guiding your next action. 
Don’t push when just allowing is the best choice. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

What’s the Problem . . . Really?

What’s the Problem . . . Really?
The trick is not to try and solve a problem before you know what it is. 
Spark – Circ de Soleil - John U. Bacon, Lyn Heward 

Several years ago my family volunteered to help out in the community.  Our task was the get rid of some of the graffiti in the area and make our neighborhood look better.  As we sanded and painted and worked at getting the stuff off, it took us nearly the entire day.  At the end, the words just came through our efforts again like we had done nothing.  I didn’t understand it.  WE were doing our best!  We had even purchased extra grade quality of tools to make sure it was a good job.  It didn’t work.  Then the supervisor came by to check up on us.  “Do you realize that this wall is going to be demolished?”  

“Uh, no.” 

“They are going to put a gate here.”  

He then directed us to another area where the paint went on smoothly and the whole thing was done in thirty minutes.  The paint stuck, the wall was pristine and our efforts were easy to see.  

Too often I think that we face life that way.  We barrel in with enthusiasm and effort and all our education and know-how only to discover we’ve been painting the wrong wall the whole time.  

John Bacon shares that sometimes the reason we don’t succeed, is because we haven’t done our homework.  We haven’t looked from all angles and found out the real problem in our problem.  

Maybe that difficulty in your relationship isn’t that you “just don’t agree about how to raise the kids” but that you don’t feel that your opinion is important to your spouse.  

Perhaps you aren’t just ‘too dumb to understand’, but it is simply a new concept and you haven’t read the latest breakthrough..  

Possibly, it isn’t that there is just a generation gap that you can’t get over, but that your child wants more, not less guidance and input from you.  

Mayhap, it isn’t that your product just isn’t marketable, but that you are trying to market it to the wrong clientele.

Find the right question, and you’ll be much more likely to  find success in anything you attempt.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Trick, Is Not Minding That It Hurts

A messenger, having just brought in a message for Lawrence of Arabia, watches him extinguish a lighted match slowly with his fingers.  

Lawrence reads the message then gathers his kit to leave. Meanwhile, Potter tries to put out a match with his fingers. It hurts and he asks Lawrence what the trick is. Lawrence replies: 

"The trick, William Potter, is not minding that it hurts." 

Every life has pain.  Some greater than others.  Some years, months, days, greater than others.  I’ve learned this principle with a depth I can’t explain adequately.  What I know is, that when I put my attention on the pain, it hurts more.  When I do not, it hurts less, and sometimes not at all. 

This principle works no matter the depth of the pain or the consequence of the cause.  When I place my mind ON the pain, the pain rules.  When I do not MIND the pain, it has no power. 
That isn’t to say that all the troubles go away.  There are continuous nudges and stings and reminders to MIND the pain.  To put my attention and focus on it.  I do. . . briefly. . . but then I try to remember the trick. 

The trick, is not minding that it hurts.

The trick isn’t that the pain goes away, simply that I choose to put it in its place, instead of allowing it to put me in mine.  Try it. . . but don’t go around touching the flame just to see!