Sunday, January 24, 2010

Why We Need To Creatively Visualize

When attempting to change lifelong patterns, we can forget how embedded those old thoughts are. (Sometimes, we are so accustomed to thinking, acting, and responding in the only way we know how, that we are oblivious to how out-of-sync we are...until circumstances dictates a wake-up call.)

But changing life habits is very hard. Often even painful, as attempting change can bring up emotions and hurts that we have not faced in years. These are the things that happened in life to shape us; nothing happens in a vacuum. We get impatient and defensive if our efforts don't bear immediate fruit.

People often joke by closing their eyes, saying "I'm visualizing bags of money, so when I open my eyes, I expect to see them!" But the humor represents the inherent disbelief in having control over our lives.

The truth is that we don't have much control over anything except how we choose to deal with what happens in the world. But we are not helpless prisoners of chance. And here's the part where people say "Yes, but if you knew what my specific circumstances and burdens are, you'd understand."

Everyone feels that way. What is 'nothing' to one person may seem insurmountable to the next. Most people are quite adept at hiding their pain and real issues. I'll be focusing on the similar, not the dissimilar. No one's pain is 'nothing.' But feeling it doesn't mean we have to be sentenced to it for eternity. Suffering does not have to be a lifestyle choice.

An old dog can learn new tricks. It just takes time and practice. (According to the book "The Outliers," it is generally accepted that it takes 10,000 hours of practice at something for an individual to master it.)

That's probably how long most of us have spent in a lifetime assuming the worst, expecting rejection, criticizing others, beating ourselves up, dwelling on the past, getting wasted, accepting other people's limitations of us, giving up, not expressing love...all the things that destroy us.
Isn't it worth a few weeks to give 'the alternative' a shot?

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