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Friday, July 19, 2013

Your Choices Today Create Your Life Tomorrow

"To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders." Lao Tzu, 6th century BC

Trust Your Inner Wisdom

I love this painted tile by 8 year old Edwin Tickner. It makes me wonder what Edwin's dog is contemplating as he silently watches the moon. And what about his little 'alter ego' who lives underground? He too sits quietly looking in the same direction as he considers life.

It was Lao Tzu, the father of the Chinese spiritual tradition Taoism, who said "To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders." Edwin's dog intuitively understands: Taking a calm, quiet moment is important for us all. A still, calm mind allows us to see choices we are blind to when caught up in the often frenetic activity of daily life.

It is only in a state of calm we are able to open ourselves up to see the vast riches of the universe available to us all.

 Calm Contemplation of Life

If you've been feeling off-balance lately or something has been bothering you that you just can't put your finger on--take a cue from Edwin's dog--still your mind and calm yourself before you open yourself up to look into the horizon.

When your mind is calmed, take a moment to reflect on how your choices today will create your life of tomorrow. Consider your current situation and what factors would create good or poor, pleasant or unpleasant outcomes down the road.

With a calmed mind, consider these perspectives and outcomes. Write a list of factors for each that contributed to the outcomes. Don't be afraid to look through the eyes of innocence and trust in yourself as you contemplate your future. You can make good and better choices.

Start with the End in Mind--What Choices Today Got You There?

Perspective 1: Looking five years down the road, you are still working for the same organization or still in an intimate relationship with the same person. What did the organization or your love interest do right to keep you? What does your life look like now?

Perspective 2: Looking five years down the road, you have left the relationship or organization. What happened? Why did you leave? What could they have done differently to keep you?

Perspective 3: Looking five years down the road an issue you're struggling with right now has resolved in your favor. What does your life look like now? What made you choose the path you're now on? Why is your life better today than five years ago? What choices did you make to support a good life? What are you most proud of?

Perspective 4: Looking five years down the road you are unhappy about the choices you made. What different choices could you have made to end up with better outcomes?

Meet the Artist

 Edwin Tickner, 3rd Grader
The Dog Tile Art Project for the Jackson County Animal Shelter

Debi Blair's 3rd grade class at Walker Elementary school in Ashland, Oregon painted tiles to create a bright, cheerful entrance to the dog kennels at the Jackson County Animal Shelter. Their creative and fun spirits come through in their art. Come on down to the Shelter to see what a difference their tile art makes.

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For more than 30 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.

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Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Sue, I love your practical steps to: "your choices today will create your life of tomorrow." This would be a perfect message for you to take into your local schools.

Susan J Meyerott, M.S. said...

Thanks, Jean. I think it's a perfect message for me to take into myself!

Actually, I use these questions regularly to get at what I think about current situations. It really helps to take these different perspectives.