“The things which hurt, instruct.” -Benjamin Franklin
So, I’m reading this fantastic book called The Tools: Transform Your Problems Into Courage, Confidence and Creativity by Phil Stutz and Barry Michels. But I hope you don’t read it, because then you wouldn’t need me. No, I’m kidding. Read this book. It’s about tapping into that part of you that is able to create a shift in your life. We all have it. The authors refer to it as a “higher force” that propels you forward into lasting change…
Have you ever walked away from a job you hated, after telling yourself for years that you had to stay? Have you ever decided that a dead-end relationship had circled the cul-de-sac long enough and suddenly said goodbye? Have you decided on the spur of the moment to take the road less traveled, and that has made all the difference? Well then, you’ve already used the power of life-changing higher forces. But where do they come from? And how do you find them again, if you’ve lost touch?
This book takes you from pondering the self-limiting question, “Is there anything I can do about the problem?” to deciding “Which tool allows me to solve it?” The Tools explains concrete, doable, and reliable techniques to resolve a variety of complex situations and circumstances. It shows you how to conquer your fears and do what’s best for you, in what I would call out of the box thinking type ways. They may sound ridiculous and impossible at first, but if you try them you just might feel like a Graduate of the Masters of the Universe Academy. So, be fore warned. These tools are not for the timid; they are for the bold.
I won’t spoil the surprise by telling you how all the tools work, because I very, really, highly, completely, unreservedly recommend that you read this uncommon book of secrets to gain a full understanding of the tools and how to use them. However, I’d like to tell you the names of some of the tools, as I think they are intriguing enough to whet your appetite for the full meal of this book. They are: the reversal of desire (Higher Force: forward motion), active love (Higher Force: outflow), inner authority (Higher Force: self-expression), and the grateful flow (Higher Force: gratefulness).
Let me give you a brief example of the reversal of desire. Let’s say that a boss/co-worker is really, really furious with you. You have a pretty good idea that they are not going to be happy to see you next week at the office. You start imagining how you could avoid the inevitable confrontation. Maybe you could get lucky and break your leg playing a pick up game of basketball over the weekend. Perhaps a relative you don’t remember, were never really close to, and has lived a good, good life may suddenly pass away and you’ll have to attend the services. I dunno, you are able to come up with a multitude of scenarios that are marginally plausible, but highly unlikely. Avoidance never really works anyway. The only thing you can do, from past experience, is to sit home all weekend and obsessively dread and fear the horrible, terrible, soul crushing scream fest that’s riding toward you like a horseman of the apocalypse. Right? No.
According to the reversal of desire, the best thing to do is to replace that fear and dread with a higher, more positive emotion. What if you were to decide to give your emotional energy to loving that angry co-worker with all your heart and hoping the best for them? If you totally focused on loving them, do you think you’d still be afraid? Maybe you’re thinking that your co-worker is unlovable. Fair enough, but is that really true? Undoubtedly there is something to love about each of us. Maybe they do charitable work, or sing karaoke like nobody’s business, or maybe they’re a single parent just trying to make things good for their kids. Whatever it is, love that, support that. It feels good, and it works.
Now, the goal here is not to love them so they won’t be angry with you. You’re loving them to love them. If you do it with an agenda, it doesn’t really take the fear away. That situation at work will be resolved. Maybe they won’t even remember on Monday what they were mad about, or maybe they’ll realize it was their mistake. Maybe they’ll still be mad on Monday, but what do you care? You loved them all weekend long, and that is a beautiful, powerful thing. Move forward with the reversal of desire.
If you’re thinking that you could use some new tools in your toolbelt, give us a call at Life Skills Resource Group in Orlando at 407-355-7378. Our experienced counselors and life coaches and hypnotherapist are here to guide you and give you the support you need on your journey. Namaste. -Kim