6. Dying from alcohol and morphine
When you decide to paint the walls in your bedroom, you figure out how much paint you need and you go to the store and get the paint. Do you need positive beliefs about the paint?
SECOND CHOICE: Choosing vs. Trying to decide
Why in the world are we here?
Surely not to live in pain and fear.
Why on earth are you there,
when you’re everywhere?
~ John Lennon - Instant Karma
1. How you can lose your marbles
I can spend forever trying to decide something.
The variables worth considering are infinite. I will never run out of variables to study. And so valuable time is lost. Not only that, but my mood declines the whole time I am trying to decide.
Trying to figure out whether something is a “good decision” ahead of time can become an endless thought-maze to wander into.
Trying to have it all figured out before I choose keeps me dancing with fear.
“Trying to decide” is a popular way of losing the moment. A way that leads to always thinking about life instead of living life. For a life to become crazy good, it has to be lived.
In an interview he said, “It’s a terrible thing in life to wait until you’re ready. I have this feeling now that actually no one is ever ready to do anything. There is almost no such thing as ready. There is only now.”
THIRD CHOICE: Verb vs. Noun
2. Am I that kind of person?
I was going to help her get into action, if that was what she wanted to do. I was going to help her move from noun to verb because that’s where all the fun is.
So my answer to her question was simply, “What act of generosity would you like to perform?”
Why would I want to participate with her in labeling her and limiting her with the labels—you’re generous, you’re not generous
None of these things help anybody. None of them are even accurate for more than one or two seconds before everything changes. Life itself is nothing but changes. Change is another word for life.
Our breathing takes in oxygen from the plants. And that dance of breath makes us inseparable from the plants and the earth and all other things we are moving and dancing with whether we see it or not! Why do we try to freeze ourselves into feeling like static, disconnected objects?
All the cells flowing and dancing through your system, all the atoms dancing inside of every molecule, all the molecules dancing in the cell—even you dancing as a great song comes to your ears and you feel you just have to get up and move—that’s the real you.
3. Stupid was her favorite adjective
I wanted her to see that there were always things she could do, actions she could take. She didn’t have to stay a noun and paste “stupid” stickers all over that noun.
“Stupid you can’t fix,” I said. “Stupid is just stupid. There’s nowhere you can go from there.”
FOURTH CHOICE: Creating vs. Reacting
Love and gravity are why we fall,
and life’s deepest meaning is:
it’s short. That’s all.
~ Fred Knipe - Love and Gravity
1. This guy needs to be taught a lesson
This guy said he’d purchased one of my very first audio programs and it was awful. It was worse than awful. My voice was so slow and monotonous he couldn’t stand it.
“It made me want to kill myself,” he said.
I’ll say my audio is for thoughtful people, so I speak slowly. I’ll tell him I put a lot of time into my words.
I back away from the keyboard before I send all that.
I see that I’m reacting.
I start to worry about how upset I’ve made myself and how it will impact the work I have to do. I am now considering cancelling some of my work today.
Then I realize I have a choice. I don’t have to react to this guy. I can do the opposite.
What is the opposite of reacting? Oh, right! Creating! I can create. Reacting and creating have the exact same letters in them. That helps me remember.
How about I create a relationship?
I could create a bond with him, maybe, based on my desire to serve people.
So I write back. I decide to be completely honest.
I say, “Dear Harmon,” (because his name is Harmon) “I hear you. In fact, I agree with you. My early recordings are just flat out bad. I think the current ones are getting better, but I could be fooling myself. I have to say I appreciate people like you who have the courage to reach out and tell me the truth. You are helping me get better. I am sorry for your negative experience and I want to make it up to you. If you send me your mailing address, I’ll send my two latest books to you. You can read those to yourself at your own chosen speed. Thanks for taking the time to communicate with me.”
This is my response to Harmon. A few days go by and I get an email from him: “Well, that was unexpected. I must say you take criticism pretty well. Was I too negative? I do like your books. Did I tell you that? I enjoy reading them.”
I send two books out to him. A relationship is being created. Created! In the old days I would have just gone with my first reaction.
2. Coloring the world with my mood
Moods are like blobs of paint on a palette.
Once I react to something, I drop down into a bad mood.
What if I just start noticing when I am reacting?
“Given this situation, what can I create?” What if I just start doing that as a practice? Almost like a hobby that I get more and more into?
3. How could a problem be good?
Peter Diamandis says, “I think of problems as gold mines.”
He is the successful founder of more than fifteen high-tech companies.
But when I’m in a low mood, I don’t always immediately warm up to that line of questioning. What is this, art class? Am I back in kindergarten with finger-paints? Should we get out the Legos?
Yes, Yes and Yes.
4. Now live your life as a poet
Pablo Neruda said: “A child who does not play is not a child, but the man who doesn’t play has lost forever the child who lived in him and who he will miss terribly.”
I would have missed my own child terribly if I’d never been re-introduced to creating.
5. How can being in love be easy?
He said, “Let’s create, okay? Let’s choose a month.
Can you do this? Can you just create a life like this?
Kathy and I were married that next November—the same November I pointed to on Hardison’s calendar.