Posts Tagged Psychology
The Invitation by Oriah
Wisdom from An Indian Elder
It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love for your dream for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon…
I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.
I want to know if you can sit with pain mine or your own without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy mine or your own if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful to be realistic to remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true.
I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure yours and mine and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes.”
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.
By Oriah © Mountain Dreaming, from the book The Invitation published by HarperONE, San Francisco,
1999 All rights reserved
Whether we are aware of it or not, we constantly look for meaning in everything we do. Of course, linguistically this makes the word “because” very powerful. If a reason is provided for a request, however inconvenient or unpleasant, it makes the request more difficult to turn down. We want to do things that are familiar and the brain conveniently and seemingly independently “fires” neurons of certainty to keep us comfortable and happy. This constant activity can make changing any situation where we feel limited or unresourceful difficult to alter. We become stuck and feel powerless to adapt.
What can be done to make change more accessible and transformation more possible? First of all we can reflect on the meaning we give to many things that we are subjected to. Strangely enough, it is amazing how simple it is to reframe any meaning we attach to something if we are prepared to make the effort. Once we understand that the brain is eager to keep us in a state of homeostasis it becomes easier to stop and reflect on alternative thinking. We have to challenge ourselves and let the unconscious know we want to think differently. This act uses innate creativity and is strengthened by using both hemispheres of the brain.
When we experience an event, we can develop a habit of stopping, reflecting and thinking: What is happening here? What else could this mean? Often we will never really know what the actual situation means, but thinking this way will allow us to broaden the way we habitually respond to a given situation. It is useful to consider that the information is just that…information, and data is open to interpretation and often ambiguous in nature. Let’s face it, data can mean just about anything!
However, interpretation of the data will determine the action that will be taken and often we simply respond habitually and fail to contemplate that there may be a better way to think about the situation. Once habitual reframing takes place it can lead to making more informed and creative decision making.
Now, what is wrong with certainty, you may ask. It’s worked well for me and why should I start to become something I’m not? Well, there is a trap in thinking along conventional, habitual lines. Does your thinking derive the benefits you ideally want? Do you make meaning in the most effective manner? Does your “certainty” get the outcomes you desire? This is where the “thinker and prover” is demonstrated, often to our cost. We busily make sure that everything that happens proves what we think it means. Confirmation is a lightning fast response to what we perceive to be true. But is it? Even when the evidence is sketchy it is amazing how we can adjust it to fit our model of the world.
Thinking differently, even fearlessly, can have a profound effect upon the quality of life. It can open up the possibilities and prevent you from overlooking potential opportunities. If you have been guilty of believing you cannot do something, how uplifting could it be to believe it may be possible? Challenging, but possible. Why saddle yourself with these self-imposed limitations?
Keep in mind that meaning is just interpreted data. Then think about the data in as many ways as you can. Consider the situation in VAK terms – what else could the sights sounds and feelings represent? Throw in smells and tastes if appropriate. Open up your internal dialogue and ask yourself: What else could this mean? There’s no need to restrict yourself; just as the question and wait for the fireworks from your creative juices to do its thing. You can create any meaning you wish and you can decide this is preferable to remaining stuck with no options. Get into this habit and don’t be surprised if opportunities begin to become more accessible.
Mike Lally – About the Author:
Mike is one of Australia’s finest Neuro-Linguistic Programming trainers. He is a sought-after executive coach, speaker and workshop presenter. He is a leading source of NLP, influence, hypnosis, body language and emotional intelligence skills. He has worked as an Information Technology Manager, an Investment Administration Manager and a National Client Services Manager.
- Love yourself, work on your self-esteem. Take responsibility for how you feel/think/act. Work on reducing your ego. Do not let people/situations hurt your ego, and if hurt, do not act on the thoughts when hurt. Center your mind before you act.
- Love others. Boost their self-esteem. Do not intentionally hurt other people’s ego. Keep developing people skills so you will reduce the probability of even unintentionally hurting others, and increase the chance of making others feeling good about themselves and hence you.
Let us look into these in further detail:
Our ego is the single reason why we experience all the negative emotions and all the suffering. Our ego is just a thought of who we think we are in terms of what we do, what we own, and what others think of us. The entire spiritual path is about reducing our ego. As our ego’s reduces, wisdom naturally increases, and our life gets better. Loving ourselves is very Important. Self-esteem is the critical component that determines the quality of our lives. The core teaching of self-help is that we are responsible for our lives, and that no matter what happens around us, we are responsible for how we feel. The meaning that we associate to events is what creates our feelings. By consciously assigning empowering meaning to events, we can always control how we feel. Wisdom is in knowing that it is never others that hurt us, but we choosing to hurt ourselves by the thoughts we think.
The other side of the the core self-help knowledge is to love others and make them feel valued. Although it would be great to have people around with no ego, practically speaking, all people around us have egos, just like we do. Wisdom thus lies in boosting people’s self-esteem – to make them genuinely feel good and appreciated. While it’s clear that intentionally hurting other people’s ego is not a good idea, what may not be that apparent is that we unintentionally hurt people thanks to our lack of skills in dealing with people. Much of classic self-help knowledge such as ”How to win friends and influence people” and most books on “relationship skills” are about learning skills so that we become a master of dealing with people. There is a psychology for every situation, age group, sex, and profession. Our ignorance of human psychology leads us to untold pain in dealing with people. Becoming more and more skilled in dealing with people the right way so we do not violate principle #2 is a great asset. This part can take a long time to master, as life always leads to new situations/people in which we have not yet learnt the proper psychology for the situation. For example, many people struggle with marriages simply because of ignorance of psychology of the opposite sex.
Many relationship problems are a result of not following these principles
Most of the relationship problems between two people, whether at home or work, happens due to people violating either principle #1 or principle #2. The patterns of all friction between two people A and B happens in one of the following ways:
1) A violates principle #1 => B violates principle #1
A gets angry at B due to an expectation B did not meet, and his ego is hurt. B in turn is hurt by the negative energy A is sending him, and reflects back the anger in some way. He may become hurt, depressed, sad or send back anger.
2) B violates principle #2 => A violates principle #1 => B violates principle #1
B unknowingly hurts A, due to some ignorance, perhaps lack of people skills. A takes that action personally, gets hurt, and sends some negative energy towards B. B in turn retalitates with negative energy.
Solution to many relationship problems lies in simply following these principles
The solution to avoiding friction between two people happens in one of the following ways:
- A follows principle #1 => B has no problem.
- B follows principle #2 => A has no problem.
- A violates principle #1 => B still follows principle #1 => no problem (i.e B does not retaliate)
- B violates principle #2 => A still follows principle #1 => no problem (i.e A does not retaliate)
Apply these principles on yourself, not others
The interesting thing is that even as we break one of these principles, we expect our counterpart to follow them! For example, we knowingly/unknowingly hurt the other (principle #2), but yet expect our counterpart to not act out as they do when hurt (principle #1). Or, we hurt ourselves by giving disempowering meaning to events related to what the other did (principle #1), and expect the other to make it right ( principle #2) Wisdom lies in applying these principles on ourselves, and not on our counterparts. We can only control ourselves, not others. Expecting others to comply only leads to disappointment.
The reason we are creators of our life is that regardless of whether people around us are following these principles or not, if we follow them, we are able to completely direct the experience of our life. Not following these principles leads to negative, disempowered and painful situations, and following these leads to positive, empowered, and happy experiences.
Posted by Joanne Wellington for Mediums World