People who do not see their choices do not believe they have choices. They tend to respond automatically, blindly influenced by their circumstances and conditioning. Mindfulness, by helping us notice our impulses before we act, gives us the opportunity to decide whether to act and how to act. –Gil Fronsdal
Words of Wisdom by Zen teacher Mr Gil Fronsdal!
Very often, people often react to the circumstances. Think about the daily routines that you go through and how do you react to them. Have we ever really stopped to think about why we do things the way we do? And how do we react to people and the way they treat us? Do you realise that more often than not, we seem to have a fixed and predictable way of reacting to daily tasks and demands by people?
People are creatures of habit. Over time, most people have come to form a fixed routine and manner of doing things. The plus side of this behavioural trait is that it allows us to deal with most of our daily tasks with minimal fuss and allows us to function at a high level of efficiency and certainty.
The downside, however, is that we become too set and inflexible in our ways. The result is that we tend to overlook other better possibilities of resolving issues and run the risk of taking people for granted. Thus the popular stereotype saying “you can’t teach old dogs new tricks”!
However, being Mindful (or Aware as I like to say) of what we do and the choices available to us is a powerful remedy to inflexibility and inefficiency. It usually involves (1) questioning and then (2) understanding one’s actions and core motivations and the ultimate objective ; and lastly (3) a commitment to investigate the tried and tested.
No doubt, it’s going to take quite a bit of effort. But the rewards more than justify the efforts.
What would your success story be?