"Do what brings you life."
-- Alan Cohen
I was watching and listening to a talk with Alan Cohen, one of my favorite authors, and effectively, one of my favorite teachers. I highly recommend his books and I especially love the simplicity of how he makes such sense. He uncomplicates what others have a tendency to complicate.
In this talk, he said, "do what brings you life," as something to place major focus on and have as a guide for everything that we do. He goes on to say, "Joy is not situational, it's attitudinal. There are two ways to change your experience. You can change your environment, or you can change your mind."
Of course there are a lot of times when changing our environment is not an option at the moment. He goes on to say, "sometimes you can change your environment, but always you can change your mind." In other words, we have total control over only one thing: how we choose to think or perceive things.
But, here's the best part. He says, "Quit resisting. When your doing something and you're grinding against it, that's what fatigues you." You know how when things are going on and you're making choices and going through your day, and then you just get so tired? It's the resistance. It's pushing through; it's toughing it out; it's trying so hard to change the environment when it is not ready to be changed.
He adds, "Our real power is in ease, not strain. It's the opposite of trying. It's allowing." I have a visual and philosophical reference that I use in my own mind about life being a river and I put my boat in the stream and so often think that by rowing harder and harder upstream that I will achieve what I want. Somehow, I think that all I want is upstream. I have to work to make a living. I have to make money. I have to this and I have to that and if I don't work hard then I will be poor and on and on the ego goes with the story.
I have learned from Abraham and Esther Hicks and Alan Cohen that what I want is truly downstream not upstream. As I learn to allow instead of try, as I learn to relax instead of strain, as I learn to accept rather than fight, I find joy. I find it with ease, for it is not to be found in strain.
From the simple philosophical teaching of Alan Cohen, this is a good one to write down, put on your wall, desk, mirror, or other place that you will see it to be a daily reminder: "Do what brings you life!"
Go With The Flow.
Spread Some Joy Today--Do several things today that nurture you and that give you joy. Spread some joy on yourself today.