If you can master this one, your life will flow

August 18, 2012 — Leave a comment

Hold,on Elizabeth, this is the big one

sanford and son imageThe quotation above is actually a favorite line of Redd Foxx’s character in his classic sitcom, “Sanford and Son”

For purposes of this article, the ”big one” I’m referring to is “Judgement.”

Deepak Chopra once suggested that if we could release judgement of any kind, our stress would virtually disappear.

I don’t know about you but I’m not there yet, however, I have learned that the less I judge what’s going on around me, the more at ease I am.

For me,it’s really about choices. I can choose to be bothered by something that I think “should” be different than it is or I can, as the Serenity Prayer teaches, “Accept the things I cannot change.”

The way I feel also has a lot to do with how I frame a particular situation in my own mind – my internal representation of it, if you will.

For example, if I’m looking at a new housing project, I can either be upset that yet another farm or field has been transformed into a housing development or, as I recently choose to do, look at what’s good about the situation.

In the case of the housing development, it created jobs, is providing a nice place for people to live, and is in many ways benefiting the community.

It’s not so much about which viewpoint is right or wrong. It’s a matter of how “I” want to feel as I go through life.

I could have just as easily chosen to be upset and gone into a tirade about how this is destroying open space and a host of other very “justifiable” arguments.

Doing this would have raised my blood pressure, upset my otherwise beautiful morning and accomplished nothing useful. The houses are not going to be magically torn down to make room for a field.

Of course, the second line of the Serenity Prayer also asks for “the courage to change those things I can,” so I will continue to work to preserve open space and control development.

It’s really simple – if you want to feel better and have less stress, give up judgement. The more you can accept things as they are, instead of how you feel they ”should” be, the more at peace you will feel.

This does not mean you have to accept everything but that you have, as the prayer asks, the “wisdom to know the difference” between what you can and cannot change.

When the “guru” was asked what he did to be able to live among the Whirling Dervishes and not be disturbed by their whirling around, he responded, “I let them whirl.”

You’ll likely read more in this topic in the future since, as I said at the beginning, “This is the big one.”

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