I’m not one to make resolutions – I do much better with positive reinforcement than negative, and I find unmet goals to be a source of dissatisfaction and recrimination, rather than motivation. However, I agree that it is important to establish priorities and keep them firmly in mind. Once we do that, it becomes a question of how much time and attention we bestow upon them. For that’s how we imbue things with power – we focus our attention on them, we consider their importance in our lives, we *care* about them. That depth of caring informs our decisions and thus we make choices more closely aligned with who we truly are and what we sincerely want. We must decide how important each thing is to us, try to foresee how spending time and effort on it may lead us closer to a greater understanding of our hearts and minds, and the creation of a world where we can honestly feel at home and at peace.
I think that’s what happens when we’re doing it right – we achieve that lovely sense of calm centeredness at the core of our being, as well as tapping into an endless source of wonder and delight.
Given all those benefits, I’m forever surprised at how difficult it is to do the work that provides such rewards. I expect that’s part of the challenge of self-discovery – learning which of our own buttons to push in order to make ourselves *want* to do the work in a consistent manner. Find our unconscious triggers, manipulate ourselves mercilessly, tell ourselves the irresistible story that ends with blazing triumph and success :).
And know where we can’t trust ourselves not to give into easy temptation or unhappy discouragement. Create a supporting structure that directs us away from these things. We are creatures of habit. We are eminently programmable. If we don’t take an active hand in designing our software apps, someone or something else will. It is important to understand our choices. Consider the possibilities. Know that it makes all the difference.
Time and attention – they are like the heat and pressure with which we shape the raw materials available to us. With steady, loving application, each moment has the potential to become a bright jewel strung upon the long strand of our existence. That is the power we hold. How can we deny ourselves the pleasure of using it?