Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Should I Stay Or Should I Go?

I have found that my goals come from both the Voice Inside My Head and other voices outside of my head that I choose to listen to.  I believe that making sure these voices agree is crucial to maintaining our mental health throughout our goal achievement journey.  If these voices conflict, we need to make a choice:  which one are we going to listen to?  Sometimes we may agree with outside voices over the Voice inside our head.  This is when we go through a change in our mindset and thus we change our goal altogether or maybe just slightly.  Sometimes we agree with the Voice inside our head over outside voices.  This is when we hold steadfast in our present mindset.  Our goal remains the same.  We stay on the same pathway we have been on, enduring to the end of it--until we achieve it. Now that we're somewhere in the middle of attaining our New Years Resolutions, the question often comes down to:  Should I stay or should I go?

I pay attention to my heart to help me make this decision.  It's not always an easy one.  If I make the right decision, I will obtain my goal but if I don't...

Hold Steadfast vs. Unset Broken Bone
If I hold steadfast when I shouldn't, I'm being stubborn, headstrong, obstinate, and I'm actually creating a mindset that will prevent me from progressing towards attainment.  This is like when we break a bone and it is not reset right.  The body begins its healing process around the break which continues to be in an unstable, unsustainable position (#Weakness).  It leaves us prone to injury in the future as well as hyper-sensitive in that particular place. In that condition, our journey is impeded.  Should I stay or should I go?

If I decide to change my mindset when I shouldn't, I am being a push-over (#EveryWindOfDocrtine) or doubting the things I have come to know.  I'm disbelieving the things I have found to be true.  There is a place for doubting things.  Before we actually come to know they are true, we question them; we study them; we use the scientific method.  But if once we have found they are true, we continue to doubt, question, hesitate, or deny them, we'll never get anywhere.  It's like pouring the foundation for a house we eventually desire to live in but we keep taking a pickax to it every time it starts solidifying into concrete.  It's true we may have to re-do some of our foundation if we didn't get it structurally sound the first time but if it was done well enough and we're still doing the pickax thing over and over, there's a problem.  Should I stay or should I go?

The Voices Outside My Head
Other people and what they have to say influences our choice of goals and whether we stay with the ones we have or change them up.  The origins of my desires usually come not only from evaluating other people's words, but also their actions and characteristics.  Through this process I identify what and who I admire (#JesusChrist, #MyExamples).  I think that what they did to accomplish their goal was PRETTY AWESOME! Then I desire to learn to do it like that myself. This is when I desire to change.

For example, I once attended church in Tucson, AZ.  I went to Relief Society (a women's meeting during church).  As I watched the Relief Society president during the announcements, I was utterly impressed.  She wasn’t the one giving the announcements.  Some of the other sisters were.  She wasn’t the one giving the lesson.  Another sister was.  But I saw her paying attention to them, smiling at them, nodding, and appreciating them through non-verbal communication.  She had a leadership role.  She used it to lift others up, to empower them.  She used it to give those whom she served the chance to speak, share, serve, lead.  She exuded what I and some others call Servant Leadership.  And all that from her chair in the audience.  So incredibly beautiful!  I only saw her example for an hour out of my entire life and it was several years ago.  I didn't know her name.  I don't even remember what she looked like but her example lives on inside of me.  I've never forgotten it.  It was a visual example of what I want to be.  Because of that it has been woven into the Voice Inside My Head and thus into my goals.

Motivation to stay steadfast in my desire obtainment journey usually comes from evaluating and admiring other people whose words and actions are like mine.  I like how I feel when I am around them so I determine I'm going to stay on this pathway  In fact the type of people we spend our time evaluating and admiring is the type of person we will become.  Birds of a feather flock together.

Comparisons:  Envy or Humility
Those to whom we look as Examples are those by whom we evaluate ourselves.  If we have a communication relationship with them, we value what they have to say about us and our work above what others have to say.  If we don't communicate with them, we often think about what someone like that would think of our thoughts, words, and actions.  We also compare ourselves to them to see how we measure up.  If our words and actions are like theirs, this confirms that we are on the right track.  We can stay steadfast.  If it isn't, then we can see if we need to change a little to the right or to the left. 

Comparisons are bad if we think, “I'm a loser compared to him.  I’ll never be like her.  I’ve never been given the same breaks as he has.  I could never do that; it’s way beyond my capacity.  It’s just impossible.” If we entertain thoughts like these, the Voice inside our head will be Envious.  But if we look at what they actually did to get where they are and who their Cause was, appreciating the sacrifices they have personally made, the Voice inside our head will be Humble.  Humility is different from Envy.  It has been important for me to study out the difference.  If we evaluate those we admire in Humility we are able to identify whether we should stay or go.  Why envy those we admire when they could be our greatest asset?

Real Examples
The KIND of people we have admired throughout our life determines the present balance of the Voice inside our head.  What defines their KIND is their actual process to obtain their goals, NOT WHAT THEY HAVE OBTAINED.  This is because we can obtain what appears to be success on the outside but on the inside things are disordered, distorted, just wrong.  As such, they can not be Sustainable.  Not Real.  In a past blog post I wrote about an IKEA dresser I put together wrong on the inside the first time.  No one would have noticed once it was finished but its functionality would have been severely impaired if I didn't go back and fix it.  Thus external results can be deceptive.  Our heart testifies of order, of truth, of sustainability which gives us X-ray vision into the real insides of results.  We can know what they really are and thus choose our Examples wisely (#ByTheirFruitsYeShallKnowThem).

Real Examples (#Balanced Causes) help us figure out if we should stay or go.  As we witness their journey, we get to know how our heart feels when a goal achievement process is on the right track and when it's not.