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Spinning The Wheel

View ProfileI can't express how many times in coaching my clients I've heard questions asking why someone might be born in a particular time or why the economy has to falter at this point in life. These questions all elude to the larger circumstances that we find ourselves immersed in as we play out the drama that is our own lives.

I remember from my own past, wishing I had been born in other times, because of whatever circumstances appealed to me from that time. Yes, we are here and now and whether we like it or not this is what we have to work with. But let's not take a sullen view of this.

First, let's consider that there are challenges and triumphs in every era. Sure, we romanticize our favorite era, or perhaps even find ourselves clinging to an era we've already lived through, but the truth, as the Bible says, is that there is nothing new under the sun.

In every generation, there has been sickness, war, booms and busts, tragedies of all sorts. The fashion, music and technology may change but the same patterns manifest themselves over and over again. But trust me, some great love stories happened during the world wars. The pinnacles of human kindness have manifested themselves in some of our darkest hours.

So why is it that we glorify the past? Billy Joel sang, 'the good ole' days weren't always good.' I would suggest to you that we resist being in the now, quite simply because we are wired to resist change.

We have within our brains, a 'reticular activation system.' The function of this system is to filter out all of the countless data our 5 senses take in that we don't consider relevant at both a conscious and subconscious level. This data, which we don't pay attention to is none-the-less stored in our short term memory and is then purged from the system each night as we dream.

It is this purging process coupled with our long term memory that helps us to remember relevant data, and most importantly preserves our identity. If this system did not work, we would at worst wake up like newborns each day, and at best operate on a very primitive instinctual basis.

What gets us stuck is what keeps us the same. And let's face it, deep down, we all want things to stay the same, only get increasingly better over time.

I'd be the one person who could vouch for that perhaps more than most. During my twenties, I went to work building a life for myself. Each attempt (there were 5), I'd start dating someone, I'd have a job and a new car. And each time, after some short period of time, I would lose my car, my job and my girlfriend. It was as if each time it was a house of cards, doomed to come crashing down. Ultimately at wits end, I surrendered myself to change. When I did, I had an experience that led me overnight across the country where everything fell perfectly into place in 6 short months.

You see, we can play with statistics and probabilities all day long. We can analyze everything with logic and reason, and in many cases, we will arrive at an acceptable destination. But, what is really acceptable to you? Do you feel ok with complacency?

It has always been my belief that there is a higher and lower expression of each of us. This isn't so much about how good or evil we can be, but more so, about how much of our potential we can reach. Apathy is our enemy.

Bottom line, the difference between the greatest expression of you and complacency is simple. Facts don't matter at all. What matters is how willing you are to act on faith, to seize the value of every moment and to disregard the background static of the world in so far as it seems to limit your odds at fulfillment. When you make the leap into flowing with change, you embrace synchronicity.
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© Bill White. Article used with permission.
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