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Friday, January 28, 2011

It's Okay to be Selfish

You’re selfish, yeah really selfish, but it’s okay because you’re the majority. We’re all guilty of it but is it really a gift? I say its self preservation.

Sure there will be people who disagree with this saying that they do things for others. In fact, I’ve heard some rather successful entrapeanuers say that not only their business but everyone else’s business is about serving others. They’ll say something to the effect that your purpose in life is to serve others. I disagree.

Let me clarify. What they really are saying is that THEIR purpose is to serve others. They get something out of it and therefore you should too. I don’t know how or why they are pinning the thing that gives THEM joy onto the whole human race. I believe everyone has a purpose, a learning experience if you will, that will give then the joy and happiness that they seek. It’s unique to the individual and not a one size fits all. All of us will give or serve but to the degree to which it is most satisfying to the individual. In other words, to the point it makes you feel good. Anymore than that and you start to feel anxiety. So while one person can give $20 to a charity/cause and feel good about it, another doesn’t feel good until they’ve given $100 and maybe helped out a bit. Still another person doesn’t feel good unless she is fully engaged in the charity such as physically working there or running the show.

They’re all looking for the WIIFM station (what’s in it for me) but to the degree it’ll make them feel good. The WIIFM is the feel good part. Once that’s accomplished they’re ready to move on. The WIIFM shows up all over the place in your life. You date, marry, hang-out, make purchases, work and go places that will give you the experiences for happiness. You’re a feel good, find happiness seeker and what’s wrong with that?

Spiritually we’re each searching for joy and happiness; therefore we’re looking for the people and events, situations that will provide it. You could say it’s as innate as the survival instinct we have. In fact it’s what we came here to do; find joy and happiness, so go ahead and be selfish. It’s who-you-are.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Get Over it

The Eagles music group had it right when they made those three words popular for this song.

Get over it simply states the obvious and yet there are so many people that will hang onto an event, situation, person or place as the cause of the failure for their current circumstances. That’s a bunch of B.S. Listen up people, the reason it remains as the cause of your failure is because you let it. You heard right, you let it. Get over it. It’s the past and there is absolutely nothing that you can do or say that will change the event or person.

I’m really sorry to hear that you were abused, taken advantage of, grew up poor, lost your job, dropped out of school, got in a car accident, were made fun of, overweight and put down, I truly am, but whatever happened to you isn’t who you need to remain. You have free will, use it. It’s the most powerful thing you have at your disposal. Don’t let anyone or anything keep you from it.

Get over it. Lesson learned. Move on. The past is the past and nothing will change it. The only thing you can do is learn from it. The more you know what you don’t want the more clear you can be on what you do want.

• Focus on what you want not what you don’t want

• Focus on what you want your future to look like

• Focus on how it would feel when you’re where you want to be

The past is gone and the future isn’t here so don’t worry about it, work on what is happening in the present moment. If you are a high school drop-out, then sign up for one course that will help you, you only need one to start, the rest will follow. Take the first step. If you were put down and made to feel unworthy, every day come up with at least five things that make you special. Write them down and review them often. If you were taken advantage of or made fun of, learn to stand up for yourself in a tactful and confident manner. You can start small and work your way up with your spouse or co-worker until you reach the person or situation that is the most challenging for you. It will take practice but keep with it. These are but a few examples but I think you get the picture.

Sure you’ll probably take a misstep and go back to your old way of thinking by singing the poor- poor pitiful me tune but stop yourself when you hear those thoughts and words surface. Do an about face and remind yourself to get back into the present moment. Remind yourself that that was the past but it doesn’t define or control you anymore for you have learned to love the experiences that have made you who you are. You got over it.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Whose Business is it Anyway?

I can find only three kinds of business in the universe: mine, yours, and God's. Reality is God. Anything that's out of my control, your control, and everyone else's control , I call that God's business.

Much of our stress comes from mentally living out of our own business. When I think, "You need to get a job, I want you to be happy", I am in your business. When I'm worried about earthquakes, floods, or war, I am in God's business. I realized that every time in my life that I had felt hurt or lonely, I had been in someone else's business. Being mentally in your business keeps me from being present in my own life. I am separate from myself, wondering why my life doesn't work.

The next time you're feeling stress or discomfort, ask yourself whose business you're in mentally, and you may burst out laughing! That question can bring you back to yourself. And you may come to see that you've never really been present, that you've been mentally living in other people's business all your life. Just to notice that you're in someone else's business can bring you back to your own wonderful self.

And if you practice it for a while, you may come to see that you don't have any business either and that your life runs perfectly well on its own.

"Loving What Is" - Byron Katie

If you've never heard of her you should check out her books. She really deals with the reality of the NOW.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Be in the Moment

To be in the moment means to be aware of the present. What is happening right now? Right now is the only time you have. Yesterday is gone. The future isn't here yet. Therefore, the only thing you have control over is the present moment. What are you going to do with it? Think about what you could of, should of, or would have done or worry about the future. A great quote I ran across about worry states, "Worry is like sitting in a rocking chair. It gives you something to do but it doesn't get you anywhere." How true! The present is where it's at and it's the only place you can be. Work on today to make tomorrow what you want it to be.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Here’s Looking at You Kid

"What a jerk! He's always getting away with something, and her, what a gossip. You can't tell her anything unless you want the whole world to know it. They're so arrogant and pompous. What a pair!"

"Look at that big boat they just got. How can they afford it with the two trips they already took this year? I heard he lost money in his business last year".

Mmm. Have you ever found yourself talking about someone in a negative way? Of course you have. We have all done it at one time or another. But what are we really saying? In "The Work" that Byron Katie uses there is the turnaround question. In it you are asked to replace yourself with whomever you are speaking about. It's not easy. It's not pretty. But, it is probably true that what you dislike and/or envy in another person is what you don't like about yourself or an item or quality you wish you had. It's called looking in the mirror. A mirror is a reflection of your physical self but in this case it is a reflection of your inner self.

I highly recommend the book, "Loving What Is" by Byron Katie. This is but a speck of what The Work is all about. There are four questions in the book to ask you along with examples of how others used the model. I call it self-awareness therapy.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

What is the One Thing That Does it for You?

In the movie City Slickers, Crusty the old cowboy, holds up one finger and tells Billy Crystal's character that there is only one thing you got know in life. Crystal's character asks him what that is. Crusty tells him, "That's what you got to figure out." He dies before Crystal's character can find out what that one thing is. At the end of the movie he figures out that what Crusty meant, that it is different for everyone.

Find the one thing that defines you. What is the one thing that is the essence of fulfillment for you? When you figure that out then everything else will fall into place. Revolve the other aspects of your life around it. Is it family, a favorite charity, or spiritual. Once you figure it out, make that the center of your life. Let's say its family. That would mean that if family is the most important thing to you when a decision has to be made as to how to spend your time, ask yourself, "What do I really want to do?" and go with that. Spend it with your family. No one died wishing they could have worked one more day but they have wished they could have spent more time cultivating meaningful relationships or done more for the needy. Many parents have spent extra hours working so that they can send their children to College all the while missing out on their children’s growing years. Leave here with no regrets. Give it your all. In the end, when you become more authentic to you true self, you also become a happier person.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Best Way to Predict the Future is to Create it

We live our life by default or by design, by chance or by choice. Which one would you rather have? Would you rather drift through life letting the circumstances that arise dictate your life or would you rather take the bull by the horns and steer it to where you want to go? You can. You have the power to make your life whatever you want it to be. Be the author instead of the reader. When given the choice, and it is your choice, most people would rather be in control of their destiny. It's not always easy; anything worth having doesn't come easily. You must commit yourself to your cause and do whatever it takes to reach your goal. If the goal is to get a college education and along the way there are setbacks, take it for what it is, a setback not a give up. Keep the long term goal in mind. Bit by bit and day by day you will continue to get closer to your goal. In the process you will not have only achieved what you want, but in the end you will have gained something much more, confidence, determination, perseverance, and a sense of accomplishment. These are qualities that will be embodied in you and carry you through anything for the rest of your life. Now isn't that worth designing your life for?