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For one reason: to bloom.
That’s why a flower exists. That’s why we exist. That’s why I exist. But it wasn’t always like that.
If you desire something other than what life has become, the shift you’re looking for will never occur until you embrace one thing: awareness—simple recognition of the thought you’re thinking that drives the behavior you use in every single interaction that has created the life you currently live—one you now claim you don’t prefer.
The fact that you realize you’re tired of where you are is good.
The fact that you want something different is great.
The fact that you want to know how to get there is key.
That key is awareness.
I used to have thoughts about my reality that weren’t true. Lots of them. Like I was stuck in a job. I was stuck in a relationship. I was helpless, unsupported and alone. No options, no hope, no love. Absolutely no cash. That thought process was so automatic, had become such a habit, that I didn’t even know it was happening.
Until I sat in that bathroom contemplating how to do this without making a mess. For me, the curtain was about to go down, before it struck me: recognition that I’d been worse places and turned things around. The problem was, I was tired of getting to the worst place.
Awareness is what happens when you harness that thought.
My friend, James, is a horseshoer. Due to his vocation, he’s handled some truly ill-mannered animals. Because I work with rescued ponies, he and I have a kinship built on people-problems that have become manifest in their equines.
James brought up a very good point: We evolved with animals. Until a very recent point in history, our lives depended on them with few exceptions. And the fact is that co-existing with animals is basically mastery of the unspoken observation called awareness. This awareness creates a synapse in the brain that makes it possible to go from what we’re observing to what we want to observe. In turn, we’re creating a synapse in the animal to accept that the thought they’re having isn’t leading us to where we want to go. Then you show them where that is.
James formed a hypothesis: “What if, because our lives are no longer dependent on the utilization of animals, we’re losing that synapse? We neither develop nor exercise those synapses that innately say, ‘This is what’s happening,’ and unconsciously use a behavior that makes the shift to, ‘This is what I want to happen.’ What if the way to initiate change in your life would be develop this synapse? Basically to re-train your thoughts?”
He had me at hello.
I got a call from my… well, this person I know. He’d just finished an intense weight- lifting session. He has the short-coupled body of a power lifter and the results he’d observed in a short span of time would indicate a physical propensity toward this undertaking. He also has, ironically, what could be called a weight problem. It’s been a struggle all his life but it seemed his devotion to lifting could be the path to his target—a certain career in the limelight.
Immediately after touting his superiority in the gym, he said, “I’m gonna stop and get a quart of chocolate milk.”
The dichotomy struck me speechless. “Or you could make a choice that would nourish your body instead of drain it.”
“Nope, I’m getting it. I’m stopping right now.”
To help awaken awareness in him, I’d get him a puppy but the two he’s owned have both ended up on his mother’s doorstep.
Curiouser and curiouser.
Saying you want something but behaving in the exact opposite manner without the awareness that you’re responsible is conflict. Your thoughts are in conflict so your behavior is in conflict and that message of conflict is what is sent to the universe as naively as you think you’ve sent something else. As a result, conflict is what manifests. And trust me, that’s the one thing we’ve seen prevalent in this person’s life.
That’s one thing that had been prevalent in mine.
The sad part is, when a scenario like this unfolds, instead of looking at the seemingly undesired outcome as perfectly planned, the powerless position that’s normally embraced is that of the victim.
When I say I want to write but I choose every other opportunity to waste my time, that’s conflict.
When I say I want a loving relationship but I silently focus on anger and resentment, that’s conflict.
When I say I want a deep connection with my child but I won’t put down the bottle, that’s conflict.
Finally my awareness led to this moment where strife no longer applies. I write. I love. I’m sober.
Just like when James ties up a horse and starts to shoe, I know I’m everything I need to be to get the job done—every job, every moment. I thank those ponies for facilitating the awareness that made it possible for me to apply it to my own life. I’m an awareness practitioner.
How do I know?
When awareness is finally embraced, a funny thing happens: you laugh at yourself. You forgive yourself. You start to love yourself. You focus on what didn’t work only long enough to analyze what you’ve learned so you can take all your attributes to the next level. And you ask whatever power you believe connects you to the universe for help. And when you’re in that place of laughter and love and forgiveness and acceptance and connection, that’s what attracts more of the same.
Then you thank every person, place and thing that got you here, accepting that the darkness may have played a more important role than the places of ease.
When working with an animal, experience innately tells you what direction to go but you have no idea where that might lead. All animals start from a blank slate but some go on to greatness.
The same holds true for life.
Time for you to bloom.