Today I had one of those blinding insights again! Suddenly everything made sense, it clicked. What a fantastic feeling when everything simply falls into place.
I am sure you’ve had this kind of insight and more often than not their magic wears of all too quickly. I forget, my habits get the better of me, I prioritize other things, and before I know it my great understanding slips through my fingers.
So here they are – 8 insights I wish I’d internalized by now:
1. Start from where you are
You cannot start from anywhere but where you are right now. Whether you like who you are right now, what you’ve done, how you are thinking, the only way is forward. Too often do I fantasize about how I would like to have been, how I would like to have acted. And I “forget” to do better right Here and Now as a result.
2. We all crave attention
“The greatest gift you can give another is the purity of your attention.” – Richard Moss
We all love nothing more than being seen, being validated, being recognized. And it is a great gift to make someone’s day by really listening to them, giving them a few minutes of your undivided attention. We can make each other so happy with so little. And yet we often neglect to do so.
3. “I don’t know”
“‘I don’t know’ is the most important thing you can say” – Stephen Gilligan
In Western culture we highly value certainty and confidence and knowledge. We expect others to have consistent and informed opinions about everything. We decry uncertainty and ignorance.
But we live in a world of uncertainty, where many factors are unknown or unknowable. We have such a strong drive to explain everything, to find causal links, that often we overshoot our target.
Let’s show courage. Let’s admit our ignorance to others as well as ourselves.
4. You react mainly to yourself
“We don’t see things as they are, we see things as we are.” – Anais Nin
What you are aware of tells more about you than about your environment. We co-create reality. We delete, distort and generalize our impressions and turn them into stories. What you are grateful for, and what you are angry about, are of your own making.
Let’s choose wisely the world we live in.
The most important advice I ever received was deep belly breathing. I used to breath very high and shallow. The simple act of breathing deeper and lower brought me much calm and relaxation. Still, I often forget to breathe properly and my life would surely be better if I remembered more frequently.
6. Be grateful for what you have
We fret so easily about our lives. Your boss treats you unfairly, your partner blames you for everything, and your doctor told you to eat more healthily. We have so much to be grateful for. Our health, our friends, our family, peace, food, shelter, the internet ;)
Let’s become aware of 5 things to be grateful for each morning or each evening.
7. If you struggle with a Situation, many others will too
This sounds like such an easy lesson to learn: Whenever you grapple with a situation, assume that it is inherently difficult. I often attribute difficulties to my own shortcomings. But so often others struggle under the same conditions.
If you are struggling with a situation, entertain the notion that it is a tricky one.
8. Let any Event be your Teacher
Extract the most you can out of any event. Whether you succeeded or failed, whether you struggled or breezed through it. We can learn so much from our experiences, and yet mostly we don’t. We become incredibly skilled simply by applying the feedback we gained from our last attempt.
Let’s grow from our set-backs, let our challenges help us become wise.