Verde River, Arizona (December 2017)
Good morning, hope ya'll are having a good start to the weekend and the weather warming up, (a little) its all relative right?
Holding serve to my theme of the past couple Saturdays I'd like to share a couple books I've been settling into, share some favorite quotes of mine that relate to personal development and having a healthy mindset. Also wanted to share a some plans I got for future videos over here in the GF Zone (doesn't stand for girlfriend unfortunately, boom roasted.. ma'self)
Starting off with some books I've been reading and learning from, (these are definitely not book summaries as most of these books I'm still reading, I just want to touch on parts from the book that I have learned from and find captivating)
I think most of us (maybe your the rare person who has never read a book relating to self help/psychotherapy/personal development etc.) have read a book about the before mentioned parenthesized genre of books. It seems difficult for authors in this wide spreading genre to bring new ideas to the fold or to do more than rehash and rearrange old strategies with some modern terminology in relation to bettering ones outlook and relationship with self.
Bruce Tift's book does a really nice job of comparing and contrasting the different roles that Buddhism and the Western (developmental) approach to life's challenges without any attempt to find a golden combination of them both. Through bringing awareness, self compassion, and acceptance for ones experiences, emotions, and challenges we can learn to stay with our less desirable experiences. To find that they aren't killing us and to go into the experience without judgment or immediately connecting it to our whole life story as a greater narrative of our life. Have the experience fully embodied without judgment or internal dialogue. Bruce also touches on our tendencies to want to wait around for everything to be perfect before we truly engage with and live our lives fully, that we always have a reason to hold back but we may just be fearing the intensity that life can bring. Maybe every zest of our life comes from that intensity and we have to move towards that intensity with our whole being, and moving towards that will bring that passion, fulfillment, love we are seeking. Waiting until we are perfect to engage intensely with life doesn't seem very realistic right?
I watched Lion King this past week and Rafiki's message to Simba is a timeless and probably cliché but relates well to "Already Free" and Tift's encouragement to sit with your feelings and truly accept them and work with them, but not going back and blaming the feelings for past experiences. The phrase I came up with to lay out the discipline (because its not easy to do this) is,
Present Sensation Over Past Explanation
we can feel and experience things without always having to go back and point at something as the cause, something unchangeable, catastrophizing things potentially. Instead lets embrace ourselves with self compassion and love and move forward, going after our goals as imperfect yet fully lovable humans.
This book is revolutionary, simple, freeing, and empowering. I always think saying something has "changed my life" is hyperbolic but at the same time, things can change your life in small ways that lead to big improvements.
The Four Agreements
Be Impeccable with your word
Don't take anything personally
Don't make assumptions
Always do your best
Simple, clear direction offered in a breezy ethereal tone of writing can be overlooked and forgotten, I listened to this book on Audible a few months back and have not allowed myself to forget the empowering messages within. How often do we find ourselves revisiting a interaction we had with someone that didn't go perfect and we think something was wrong with us? (Don't take anything personally, the person you interacted with could of been having an off day, your also most likely assuming the other person was judging you negatively) Were not feeling super hot today but we still manage to get to the gym and get a work out in? (Always doing your best doesn't mean one days best is the same as another)
Of course rule #1 and #4 are pivotal to finding success in ones journey but just from reading this book a few months ago, I've had numerous experiences where going over rule #2 and #3 have provided me with immense freedom when interacting and engaging with friends, family and especially strangers.
Everyone has a multitude of internal/external activities going on constantly, and you gotta believe that's impacting their interaction with you and others. There is so much else going on behind the scenes with folk that's shaping what they give back to you which is why you should never take anything personally. Its just such a burden remover and man, does it make it easy to brush past any exchange you wish had went better (doing your best and using your words properly ensures this fact more so, though we can always be kinder)
Removing assumptions is also just a game changer, what a energy freeing rule to follow. Curious? Ask. Don't allow yourself to pre judge a situation or person based off things you could easily find out with clear communication.
Alrighty, rambling done. here is a Jordan Peterson Quote to ponder going into next week.
Stay tuned to the YouTube channel next week for a new "Gainary" Video as well as the first video of new series I'm looking forward to getting started...