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Transforming Thoughts, Shifting Perspective, and the Humor in it ALL


Recently, my dear friend, Holly, joined me for a visit at my office before I left town for the holidays, and she showed me what her dog had done to one of her index cards that housed a favorite quote from the Dalai Lama.

In case you can't read it well in the picture, it's entitled,

“Dalai Lama's favorite practice: Transforming Thought,”

and it reads:

“Let yourself visualize the effects of unskillful thought patterns such as judgment, complaining, annoyance, anger, and so forth.

Inwardly, see how such thoughts affect you: the tension, the raising of your pulse rate, the discomfort.

Outwardly, see how such thoughts affect others who hold them, making them upset, rigid, negative. Then make the compassionate determination:

I will never allow such states to make me lose my peace o---(bite taken out of the paper).”

We howled at this together. The torn off portion could not have been better placed! Especially considering the last sentence included the oh-so-rigid-word “never.”

I don't know if it's because I was raised in California with parents who were still recovering from some of the rigidities and self-flagellation that can come from centuries of ancestors committed to fulfilling “well-behaved” moral training, OR if it was simply the great pleasure I feel whenever nature shows us she will shift just about everything…transforming thoughts, perspectives and all of life, regardless of our agenda. We can bemoan her, love her, and maybe even laugh with her when she does. Might as well! WE ARE HER.

Another dear friend of mine, Barbara, has often reminded me over the years what our mutual mentor (Jack Rosenberg) used to teach as a mantra when life felt challenging:

“I've been here before.

I'll be here again.

I survived this before.

I'll survive it again.”

The lesson being, we truly have ALL that is needed within us to be able to meet anything that IS. (wink, hug, smile, hand hold, please)

Wishing you all moments of celebrating:

-the humor within the hustle and bustle

-the sweetness alongside the irritations

-the tenderness of these times

Most of all, I wish us all loving kindness toward ourselves AND to one another. It's so precious!

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