Thriving Women: In our Seed Project lesson for this week...

Posted on Sept. 25, 2005 at 10:14 a.m.

By: Randi Waldman

Dearest Thriving Women,
In our Seed Project lesson for this week, one of the quotes just keeps rumbling and rumbling around in my mind......."If love is truly a verb, if help is a verb, if forgiveness is a verb, if kindness is a verb, then you can do something about it."  (Betty Edie).  It seems to me such a call to action - empowering, exciting and maybe a bit overwhelming. The quote implies that we simply "Just Do It!"  Hmm, that sounds familiar.  Where to to much to take in!  How can I remember to do all of this???  Changing ourselves is a challenge.  Challenge involves courage, commitment and process.  In a wonderful book called Essential Spirituality by Roger Walsh, I found some wonderful and useable principles to help guide us in this process of change:
START EASY -  It is a good idea to start with habits and situations that are relatively easy to master.  Build your confidence.  Jewish wisdom says that "The key to everything is the way you start," and recommends, "Start in a modest way, maintain an earnest effort to aspire to higher and higher realms, and will have attained undreamed-of heights."
DECIDE HOW LONG  -  Commit to a trial period for doing the change.  Deciding never to eat unhealthy food again for the rest of your life sounds wonderful but will probably be overwhelming.  It is much better to experiment with a healthy diet for one day, give it all your attention, and succeed, than to try halfheartedly for months and fail.  
LOOK AND LEARN  -  Explore your experience as you proceed.  How do you feel?  What resistances do you experience?  The idea is to learn as much as possible during the process of change.
BE GENTLE  -  Be kind and forgiving to yourself.  If you make mistakes, accept the fact that you are human and an imperfect creature.  Remember, these are practices.  If you could do them perfectly you would not need to practice.

START AGAIN - If you slip up (and who doesn't), start again as soon as possible.

WRITE IT DOWN - It helps to keep a journal in which you record your goals as well as your insights and observations, mistakes and successes.  Writing down goals clarifies and strengthens commitment.  Research shows that people who write down their goals are far more likely to succeed than those who don't.

ENJOY YOURSELF -  It is okay -- even GREAT to have a good time!!  One of the goals of aliveness is JOY.  Change is hard, and the ability to laugh at oneself and have fun along the way is an essential ingredient to WANT to change!

ABOVE ALL....DO IT!!  -  Any change will transform your life to the extent that you actually practice the steps and apply them to your daily life. Reading will lead to great ideas, but little personal change.  We get out of practice what we put into it.  In the words of the Buddha, spoken 2,500 years ago and still true today:

However many holy words you read,
However many you speak,
What good will they do you
If you do not act upon them?

As always, wonderful, beloved women....iTHRiVE is all about challenge by choice.  With the holiday season looming, try thinking about one aspect of your involvement in the season that you might want to change.  Spend the next few weeks pondering this, then pick one small aspect that you might want to focus on, and apply the aforementioned steps to your decision. Be mindful about it and then notice at the end of the holidays how it felt to you to engage in this process. Then imagine how it might just be a great way to go into the new year!!

Soon, many of us will gather for our own holiday R&R on November 17th. We are so excited and anticipating with great joy to have such wonderful energy initiating the holidays in iTHRiVE style!  We will send a reminder email with details next week.

Yours in health and love,
Randi and Daniela


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