I love this quote with this photo. When you are rock climbing, you have to have a singular focus on what you are doing. Where is the next hand grip? The next place to. wedge in your foot? Constantly looking up the wall of rock to find the easiest way up. Checking your lines to be sure you are safe. The rest of the world recedes to the back of your mind. You don’t hear anything, except the thoughts in your head about the next hand or foot hold. It all about balancing your weight on this foot, then holding on with that hand, as you extend for the next hold.
Everyone has a story of personal tragedy. Illness in the family; a death; a divorce; a loss of employment, an accident, the list can go on and on. It might be that you lose faith or hope of life ever turning around. The injustice of your situation can eat at your soul if you allow it to. We get so focused on what is going wrong, that we don’t see everything that is still going right. We judge ourselves or others; we place blame and become victims; we get angry. In order to move on, you need to stop focusing on the negative and start focusing on the positive.
Happiness is a choice, not a result. Nothing will make you happy until you choose to be happy. No person will make you happy unless you decide to be happy. Your happiness will not come to you. It can only come from you.”
Happiness comes from a way of focusing on the positive things in our life. No matter how sideways our life is going, there are always things to be grateful for. We need to stop focusing on the problems and instead focus on finding solutions. Stop over thinking and start feeling what is true, what is right, and life will start flowing in the right direction. In a storm, the wind and rain can blow so hard that it beats you into the ground. Flood waters can rip a house right off its foundation. Trees can fall and tear the roof off of a house. But at some point, the storm passes and the sun comes out again and dries up all of the rain water. You can’t prevent bad things from happening, but you can choose how to handle it with grace, joy, and peace. Focus on what can be changed.
“Always remember, your focus determines your reality.”
My children growing up loved the poetry of Shel Silverstein. They loved his book, “Where The Sidewalk Ends” the most. One of his poems is about a little girl that says she feels sick. She proceeds to list every possible illness and childhood disease, in order to not go to school. Then the parent says it is Saturday. And all of sudden the little girl feels great and goes outside to play. The poem has always reminded me of the stories we tell ourselves, to not get up and do what we know that we should and need to be doing.
“Whatever life may send your way – Make the best of it. Don’t waste your time and energy worrying about it. Instead, find a way to do something about it. Learn from it, adjust to it, be strong, be flexible and be your best in every situation.”
I love the work of Byron Katie because her four questions show us how the stories we tell ourselves are not the complete truth or the only truth of a situation. I highly recommend reading her books. Take any situation currently creating drama or trauma in your life. Ask these questions, and really sit with the answers. Feel into the answers of what is really the truth.
Is it true? (Yes or no. If no, move to 3.)
Can you absolutely know that it’s true? (Yes or no.)
How do you react, what happens, when you believe that thought?
Who would you be without the thought?
Anytime I have used these questions, I realize that #2 stops me in place every single time. I have never been able to say that something is absolutely true. The thought I am thinking then becomes the only source of my pain. If I release the thought, I release the pain. Who would I be without the pain? I would be happier and more at peace. Then, she does what she calls the turnaround question – the turn around question puts the thought to the opposite end of the statement. The purpose of this is to welcome all your thoughts and experiences with open arms so that you lose the resistance to what is actually true.
“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new”
“I woke up this morning and realized I don’t have what it takes to sit back and be average.”
Years ago I was a loan processor for a company in Seattle. I worked for a branch in an area called South Center, which was next to a shopping mall. Most of the people there smoked and they would be out front every hour smoking a cigarette. It worked out to 10-15 minutes of every hour, out front smoking. I didn’t smoke, and I didn’t feel right about spending “working” hours I got paid for, standing out front while everyone else smoked. They gave me a bad time for the first few months I worked there and then gave up trying to convince me to be part of the crowd. We all have a moral code, some of us have a very strict code, and others not so strict. To be other than average, you need to work hard to excel and be a master of your craft. Spending 15 minutes of every hour for 8 hours means that you were working only 6 hours. A lot of work can be accomplished in those two hours, or you could just sit back and be average standing out front with the smokers= the choice is always yours to make.
“The only way to discover our true potential, is to clear out the clutter and focus on what matters.”
Just like that rock climber, each hand hold and each foothold is getting her closer to the top. The focus is solely on getting her to the top. She isn’t thinking about the climb down, or the ride home, or going to work on Monday. Every decision you make should be all about moving you one step closer to your goal just for today.
“Each day, focus your attention on what you want. Each day, take one step that will bring your closer to it. All things are possible! The key is to identify it, claim it for yourself, and believe that you are worthy to have it”