As I turn 50, my intention is to devote the second phase of my life to share my insights learned through my many missteps over the years and the introspection that followed, so that others need not go through the same bumps and falls that I had to endure on their journey to joy, fulfillment and peace.
I truly believe that we can create an enlightened society where inner awareness can empower people to thrive in harmony. To generate joy and peace in your life and our world, we need to look at ourselves both as individuals and as a collective.
While I learned these lessons the hard way, my hope is to present them in a manner that is simple and easy to adopt without experiencing any pain or even a lot of practice. It is based on an approach of illuminating blind-spots, so that once discovered they’re never forgotten.
1. The solutions to all your problems are within you.
While you might have heard that the answers to all your problems are within you, there is no simple approach to discovering them. My premise that each of us is inhabited by a hidden PIG and APE helps place a tangible face and name so you can actually watch them when they start to control your moves. The PIG and the APE not only mimic the behaviors of their animal namesakes, but are acronyms for Pursing Instant Gratification and Avoiding Painful Experiences. When we constantly look outside ourselves for answers, we miss catching the real inner culprits for our unhappiness.
2. You are NOT your Ego.
Your Ego, defined here as an identity created for you by your mind, is addicted to your achievements, accumulations and your failures. YOU, the self you were born as, is much bigger than the limited identity your thinking mind can create for you. It is awesome and connected to the source of all life. Mistaking your identity for your true self leads you down a path of worry, fear, anxiety and pain. Merely accepting the fact that you are much bigger than your Ego liberates you from the confines of living your life using someone else’s yardstick. You blossom.
3. Live life meeting the needs of others without ignoring your own.
Once you recognize the hidden animals and distinguish YOU from your Ego, you are ready to live life being keenly aware of your own true needs as well as those of others. You will easily separate needs from wants and be able to engage with others in a productive way. The empathy and compassion that flows from you will provide you with the tact necessary to address tough situations.
4. Live Two Days at a Time.
There has to be a balance between the two extremes of living only for today and living only for the future, and it’s not very difficult to find.
“Be Here Now” and attend fully to the issues before you today. But at the same time, be aware not to do anything that could jeopardize your tomorrow. At the end of each day you might ask: What did I learn today? What can I do different tomorrow? Then “just live it” the next day. Today and tomorrow, today and tomorrow. Life is a repeating series of todays and tomorrows.
For harmony in your life and our world,