Week Ending November 9th, 2018
Content Covered: TidBits of Wisdom
I believe there is something to be said about the interplay between thought and action. Through this lens, I present to you three tidbits of insight.
The emotion itself isn‘t unhealthy; it‘s the expression of the emotion that determines whether it is healthy or unhealthy. Anger doesn‘t hurt other people, and sadness doesn‘t change your life; it‘s the behavior from those emotions that does.
– Emily Maroutian
Often times, when we feel negative emotions (sadness, anger, hate, etc.) we compress within ourselves, shutting down to the outside world. A negative spiral of thoughts and emotions takes us deeper and deeper into this feeling; sometimes this process leads to depression, or a huge fight, other times we beat ourselves up for being so stupid.
I’d like to challenge this current process and remind you of the principles behind “Yes, and.” To say “yes” is the equivalent of acknowledging that these emotions are your current reality; to say “yes” is not to accept that you want this reality to remain true. Rather it is just a way to open the door of ‘allowing’ something else to flow through.
When we acknowledge that these emotions are our present state, we empower ourselves to do something about it, “and” then we are ready to move through the emotions, we are ready to change our style of expression of this emotion. “Yes, and” is a very small, and very powerful tool.
There is only one way to come to understand the other person‘s story, and that‘s by being curious. Certainty locks us out of their story; curiosity lets us in.
-Bruce Patton, et al.
When we maximize curiosity and interest in the other we minimize our bias and preconceptions becasue, at its heart, curiosity asks why.
Most of the time, we enter conversations having established certain assumptions and beliefs not only about the other person but about the relationship that we share with that person (Ladder of Inference anyone?). And yet, often times it’s because of these assumptions that we pass judgment rather too quickly on what is right and wrong.
I’m guilty of it too, in fact, I have found that the more powerful the emotion (anger, frustration, etc.), the harder it is to remain curious. The goal in those moments is to first utilize self-awareness to acknowledge that this is my reality (“Yes”), “and” then ask myself what will expressing from this place do for our conversation, or for my relationship with that person?
By no means am I saying this is an easy thing to do, often times I become self-aware a bit late in the process and I’ve already caused some damage. Nonetheless, the moment that I do become aware is the moment that I have a choice: I can continue as I was, or I can choose differently.
Faith is in the heart, but it plants its seeds in your actions. – Najwa Zebian
It is one thing to have beliefs, it is quite another to live life by those beliefs. It is in the transition between thought and action that integrity is carved, and in this very precipice is where most intentions fall.
Creating a life that balances the inner conversations derived from our continuous stream of self-talk with the actions necessary to create that very life, is a never-ending task.
In our consciousness we must correct, clam, create and destroy thoughts that don’t align with our values; and in our walk, we must produce actions that support the narrated reality we carry within. Regardless of the goodness of our intentions, to do either but not both is how integrity is lost.
Three seemingly disparate tidbits of knowledge intertwined with one common theme: to be & to do exist in context of the other. And to be aware of only one, and forget to do the other is the equivalent of reading about the magnificence of the sun and never closing the book to feel the warmth of the rays.