Which has more importance to you: work, life outside work, or both? Or can you flex and balance? If work is more important, is it that you’ve tied up your value with what you ‘do’? If it is life outside work, have you become inflexible with work? Are you afraid of taking on new projects or changing jobs? Do you limit what you might achieve in this way? Then again, are you trying to be superwoman or superman? Only, if we try it do it all we end up exhausted, have little or no reserve for the unexpected and may even burn out! Is it possible to find a balance and feel fulfilled in all areas of our lives whilst still having some time for ‘me’, and time and resilience to deal with the unexpected?
Inflexibility makes us rigid and un-resilient. This happens when we become over-identified with a particular image of success, a sign of this is that we become afraid of losing that position. When we are addicted to approval, do you find it difficult to say ‘no’ to anything? When we keep within our comfort zone and don’t consider that we might have a greater potential? When we are hemmed in by low self esteem and don’t feel good enough or believe in ourselves.
When something is flexible, for example, a palm tree it can survive massive storms. Its’ roots run deep. Applying this to ourselves… when we know ourselves deeply we can bend without compromising ourselves (we can stay aligned to who we truly are.) A palm tree is always a palm tree, it doesn’t resit the storms or become overwhelmed by them.
Exercise 1: See yourself at your best. Recall a time when you did something that you were really pleased with. What qualities were you using? These are your core qualities.
Exercise 2: Think of 3 animals. What quality does each of these animals embody for you? The first one is how you see yourself; the second how others see you and the third is who you are.
Exercise 3: Try meditation: let go of the externals, put down your defences, focus on the word ‘peace’ and allow yourself to internally expereice peace. See here for an on-line meditation on peace.
When we feel at our best nothing is too much of a big deal. Otherwise we hiding (staying within our comfort zones) or on the defensive (seeing threats to our status quo everywhere.)