Ultimate Position of Power

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When I am afraid of what I might lose

When I am trying to get something from you

I am not free to wield the power of integrity

The power of character

Or the power of courage

 

After speaking today, several people complimented “my energy” and “my unique power.”

I was keenly aware that their impression came solely from the battle I had waged against myself (for days) to be in that surrendered place of power and not in the place of fear and need.

The ultimate position of power is bringing all of who we are to the moment minus attachment to an outcome.

(By the way, that power position is reflected in the following quote (and was a turning point in Cranston’s career.)

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Stop Acting So Small

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Ways in Which I Have Acted Small:

  • Being jealous of the place others have in the Universe

  • Whining about how unfair the world was to me

  • Hurting others to make myself feel better

  • Telling myself that I was more or less valuable than any other human being

  • Thinking I was common

  • Wallowing in my limitations and pain

  • Giving up too quickly

  • Failing to smile at the future and to act with courage

  • Ignoring the magnitude of the miracles that sustain me any given moment

  • Fearing scarcity and loss

I Am So Annoyed…or Is That Annoying?

Annoying Stuff that We Don’t Like about Others, but Do Ourselves:

1) Try to “fix” everyone

2) Blame others for our unhappiness

3) Cling to, and complain about stuff (without doing anything about it)

4) Hustle for worthiness and acceptance from others (instead of finding it within)

Quick Fix Tips:

1) Drop our own agenda for other people and just be present for them. 

2) Seek out a coach who will tell us the truth about ourselves. 

3) Reject fear. Study the brave.

4) Honor and value ourselves.

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Putting Ourselves to Sleep?

“If the individual receives no satisfaction from his work for its own sake, he dies internally, a condition which no financial reward can justly compensate.” – Timothy Gallwey

This quote describes the inner struggle I experienced while working to support my family in the wrong job.

Sometimes, for a season, many of us are constrained to do so. In those cases, rather than die inside…

  1. Don’t give up hope. When things were the darkest for me, it was because I believed having a job that fully engaged my talents was out of reach. (It wasn’t.)

  2. Be completely present. For the sake of those we serve. “The anecdote for exhaustion is wholeheartedness.” – David Whyte

  3. Challenge yourself. Character goals. Physical goals. Relationship goals. Efficiency goals. Success is sweet…no matter how small.

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This March…march into your best life.

Want Ecstasy?

“When we blend our unique talent with service to others, we experience the ecstasy and exultation of our own spirit, which is the ultimate goal of all goals.” -Deepak Chopra

For many years, while working as a mediocre middle-manager, I told people I had no talents.

Privately, I wondered if caring about people and talking could be talents.

This morning, I offered up to the Universe my inclination to care about people and to speak honestly about my failures.

Yesterday, someone paid me to do that (and, I could tell it made a difference).

Ecstasy.

Got a Chaos Management Plan?

Do you have a chaos management plan (CMP)? Not just for North Korea but for the other times when your life is “nuked” by relationship, financial, or circumstantial violence.

We can’t be lulled into thinking we don’t need one, especially if we are currently quite impressed with ourselves and our “cool.”

It doesn’t take much for the props that make us feel cool to fall away and our inner deficits to be embarrassingly exposed.

My simple CMP:

  1. Accept what is.
  2. Forgive myself and others for the chaos.
  3. Invest in inner strength more than props.
  4. Expect chaos and smile at the future.

I Have a Dream…Not a Nightmare

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Historian Rutger Bregman’s TED Talk about eliminating poverty is worth watching even if you don’t agree with his conclusions. His quote, “The one thing that history teaches us is that things can be different,” reminded me that even when things have been the same for centuries, the tenacity of courageous thinkers and doers have made huge differences for us all.

Radical, “impossible” changes occur when we:

  • Use our gifts to make a difference
  • Dream new dreams
  • Refuse to give up
  • Face the world with courage

Living like this is so much more fun than complaining about, or shrinking away in fear from, the way the world is. As Bregman said, “Martin Luther King’s famous speech is “I have a dream, not, I have a nightmare.”

Heroes: What They Have and Where They Live

“We come to knowledge (self-improvement, success) as we go to war: wide-awake, with fear, with respect, and with absolute assurance. With all four of these requisites, our actions lose the blundering quality of a fool. If we fail or suffer a defeat, we will have lost only a battle, and there will be no pitiful regrets over that.” – Carlos Castaneda

I love Castaneda’s four requisites:

  • wide-awake
  • fear
  • respect
  • absolute assurance

Although they may seem contradictory, fear and absolute assurance create the perfect juxtaposition; a tension between the raw awareness of weakness and the confident power that turns an average human being into an icon.

As in film and television, the vulnerability of the protagonist must be there or else we are not drawn to them. But, as they rise above their fear, we are lured with them…into the dangerous place where possibility lives.

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Chopping Off the Dread that Hangs Over Our Head

I just noticed how terribly weighty a task is that makes me feel incompetent or below average; how I will avoid this task and let it cloud up my day and darken my future, and how, the only way I can escape the storm (that comes when I don’t do this task) is to meet it head-on.

From painful personal experiences, I am learning that these tests of my character are intentional, that they will keep coming back until I learn to be more courageous, honest, strong, persistent, patient, loving or whatever it is that I am deficient in.

Like, recently, when I had to go talk to someone who wasn’t happy with me…

It felt like going to execution (because my personality type hates disapproval and rejection so much).

But, after looking at it as a practicum in self-development and remembering that if I didn’t pass the test, I’d have to retake it, I…to my great relief…just got ‘er done.

 

face down your demons