(Just in case you were wondering, Mother Theresa makes a special guest appearance later in this post.)
Why can’t we get along? Why do we define ourselves in terms of blue states and red states, as liberals or conservatives, as anti-war or pro military, as if these things were mutually exclusive?
Why do so many New Years resolutions to accomplish specific professional or personal goals fall by the wayside only days and weeks into the New Year?
Plans to lose weight, to exercise more, to move ahead in one’s career, to spend more quality time with loved ones, to get organized, and on and on it goes. Why can’t we get it done?
It’s the ‘All or None’ syndrome at work.
We fall into the trap of defining ourselves and others in terms of absolutes. We make black/white decisions about whether a given situation is failing or succeeding. And depending on how we view the world this particular day, we either cope or we quit.
Other times, we fall prey to too forcefully asserting ourselves, grabbing real or emotional territory and refusing to consider other perspectives whether such ground is rightfully ours or not.
In an intellectually honest place, we have to see that from this behavior we end up closing doors, missing opportunities and creating dead-ends.
We also end up missing the opportunity to connect with others on a human level. When multiplied day after day, week after week over time, this casts real karmic gravity.
It doesn’t have to be this way. We don’t have to be victims of impatience, malfeasance or intellectual laziness. We don’t need to isolate ourselves.
Metaphorically speaking, we are building steps. If we can figure out steps ‘to what,’ then we can write it down. That is step one. It will be iterative in nature.
From there, we can start moving forward. By ‘moving forward,’ I mean that we can start being proactive, and formally map out where we want to journey and how we want to get there.
Then we can start building a boat to navigate those particular seas.
Mother Theresa once said, “If I look at the mass, I will never act. If I look at the one, I will.”
The one is you. Change begins within you but once you commit to taking that step (and externally communicating your mission with consistency and clarity to others), your path is destined to be golden and landscaped with many rich and interesting connections.
Can you think of a reason to wait? I can't.