Thursday, March 24, 2011

I heart the Library

Here's a few words inspired by the NYC Public Library:

tunnels and stacks
order of mystery
hushed intensity
space of quest and creation
magic tube messengers with arrivals of my unknown
earnest gatekeepers and guides
i adore you
thank you, nyc public library, you're the bombdiggity

I got all juiced up about the library today. It was such a treat to say, "I need to find X, can you help?" And in a few seconds...we got a lead. There was something magnificent about this in the age of google. I felt grateful that so much knowledge was organized, ready, and waiting...just for me to ask and for me to touch and feel and turn, page, by page. I felt supported and knew that the librarians were happy to support me.

This experience reminded me that everywhere you go...asking for help is just as much about receiving as it is about giving someone an opportunity to do what they do best - or at least contribute. Another goodie thought I received have a choice, you can stare at the stacks of closed books, and think..."oh shit," or, if you figure out the right questions to ask, you get to find exactly the page you're looking for. That page, that sentence, that key is waiting for's just a matter of asking.

Not sure what to ask? Sometimes the best question to ask is, "what would be the best question for me to ask if I'm trying to do X? Or, "Tell me what I need to know."

Remember what David Cooperider said, "The questions we ask create our reality."


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

They're Not Made of Glass

If you commonly feel guilt you might enjoy two of my favorite aha's: "They'll be OK." and "I'm not responsible for how you feel."

I used to get so worked up over saying "no" or being concerned I was disappointing someone by doing X, Y, Z. God forbid someone else feel inconvenienced, hurt, or uncomfortable. I'd go through hoops to avoid someone else feeling any stir but brightness.

But that did several things that suck:

1. I'd end up going against what I needed to actually do in order to dance around what I thought could hurt someone.

2. I'd diminish one's capacity to adapt by assuming they couldn't handle X. Who I am to judge what someone can or can't handle?

3. By not doing what served me best in the moment - the other party (whether they consciously got it or not) usually lost out. Because the world only benefits when you're your shining best and happy.

4. I'd withhold the opportunity for one to deal honestly with their own reality. That's juicy growth time!

If this tugs at you. Take a deep breath. Stop enabling. And do what's right for you. They'll be OK. And, you're not responsible for how they feel. You can't do anything about it. Only they can make a decision about how they handle and interpret their own reality.

This applies for silly little things like saying, "No, I don't feel like going out tonight," to "I no longer want to see you" to "You know, I'm really disappointed in X, that didn't sit well with me."


Disclaimer. This, like many wisdom wonders, has to be managed within the context of its antithesis - in this case, it's ultimate compassion and kindness towards the other. It's a funny tension - but holding it will set you free!