Do you have someone sick or suffering in your life? Are you surrounded by well meaning family and friends, and highly trained medical professionals all telling you how it's going to get worse and worse?
What happens to plants when you direct negative thoughts, words and actions at them? Science shows us they wither and die. Are people any different?
What if rather than contributing like this to someone's deterioration by adding your voice to the throng, you asked the person suffering "What contribution could I be to you?" Then listen and honour the person by being that, even if it's just to hold their hand and smile.
You are not expecting a miracle recovery, even if it's possible and could occur. You are honouring the person and offering them energy, space, allowance, and possibility.
What different could you be by contributing that?
How many relationships do you have? Friends, colleagues, family, a partner?
How are they going? Are you suffering things you'd rather not because you think you have to maintain your relationships?
Will that help? Maybe. Maybe not. Is it fun to suffer? Or would you rather enjoy life with other fun people?
Are you committed to making your relationships work NO MATTER WHAT, because YOU CAN DO IT and to do otherwise would be to fail? Perhaps you have decided that he/she is The One and your rose-coloured glasses don't allow you to see things as they really are?
If you'd like to see you, the other person, and your relationship more clearly ask "What am I pretending not to know?"
You already know what will be the greatest contribution to your life; you're just pretending you don't.
How many people do you have in your life you want to kill, or at least complain about endlessly? One or two? Or too many to count? When you think about these people do you smile, or frown?
When you see other people frowning, how do you feel? Do you feel happy and energetic, or not so much? What about when people smile at you? How do you feel?
Have you ever heard this children's song?
When someone smiles at me,
I feel like smiling too,
When I see someone who is happy,
I feel happy too.
Does this work? If you'd like to find out, ask "Who can I smile at today?" and start with one person. Then try another, and another, until you smile at everyone.
Yes, some of them may think you're insane. And do you really care what they think if you end up happier?
Are you happy with life? It's okay to say you are. But you probably can't, or won't admit it, right?
What is that? When did you decide that you couldn't be happy and had to be dissatisfied and complain about life?
Would you like to have more happiness in life? Will moaning and groaning create it? Or will choosing to be happy create it?
If you'd like to find out, ask "What can I smile about today?" and then SMILE and smile some more.
You may only find one thing to start with. A really great cup of coffee. A break in the traffic. A clear blue sky. So SMILE.
You can also smile at the not-so-great stuff. Illogically restrictive regulations. SMILE. Waterfalls of fear around you. SMILE. Unable to see family or friends. SMILE. Lost your job. SMILE. Feeling depressed. SMILE.
After a while, like magic, your sense of happiness will expand and you'll see more and more great stuff in life. Previously unthought of possibilities emerging like new grown weeds from a scorched earth.
You may even infect others with your choice to choose happiness, and would that be something to smile about?
How often do you feel swept away by the stream of people's trauma and drama? Dragged over the rapids and smashed against the rocks?
Or perhaps you're the salmon diligently swimming upstream, against the flow?
What if instead, you were the rock in the stream, allowing the water to pass one way and the salmon to pass the other?
What if you could see it all, without being the effect of it, so that you could choose what worked for you?
This is allowance, and questions will enable you to be in that state.
Like to be the rock? Ask yourself "What if I be the question?"
Got something going on? Feeling a little down? Do you turn to your family, friends, or insignificant other for comfort, kindness, and a listening ear? Or maybe you share your soul on The Socials?
What do they offer you? Do they tell you what you're doing wrong and how, if you lived you're life like them, everything would be great? Or do they sympathise and help you reinforce your victim status?
How is that for you? Does it make you feel better?
Are you really looking for answers? Or are you seeking something else? Maybe a hug, a smile, a space to be you?
Are you willing to create this for yourself, if no one else will? If so, ask "What will nurture me?" and be/ do/ have that. It could be anything. Blowing off the afternoon to do the thing you love to do to relax and makes you smile.
And remember, next time someone comes to YOU like this, ask them "What can I do for you?" then listen, smile, create space, ask more questions, and shut up.
How often do you get angry? What makes you angry? How quickly does your anger come to the surface?
Do you think it's wrong? Does the anger envelope you in layers you can't escape? Does it distract you from creating the life you'd like?
Rather than considering the anger in itself wrong, what if you asked a question to get clear on what it truly is? For example
- Heated Anger can indicate where you are in judgement, rather than interesting point of view
- Explosive Anger can show you where you've been suppressing yourself, or
- Rising Anger may indicate someone is lying to you.
So next time you sense anger on its way, ask yourself "What is this anger?" Then notice what shows up and acknowledge it, breath and ask "What would I like to create?"
In doing so you'll be free to choose for you, rather than be in reaction.
Of course you can aways play with Potent Anger, which is where you choose to get your point across. Think of this anger as the power you use to stop people blindly walking across the road in front of a truck.
Do you ever find yourself talking about a particular topic to anyone who'll listen? Something you'd like people to notice and agree with you about? It could be about the state of the nation, the office, or people's houses, clothes or bodies? The Latest Crisis of the Week?
When you do that, notice your energy. Do you talk about it lightly as a question with an interesting point of view energy, and then get on with the fun of life?
Or do you sense a heaviness, a stickiness which distracts you from being joyful?
When you say interesting and get on with it, you are being aware and in allowance of it. When you get gummed up with its heaviness, you are the effect of it.
So if you'd like to have uninterrupted access to joy in life -- no matter what is going on in the world -- next time you notice yourself repeatedly thinking, saying or doing something, ask "Am I in allowance, or the effect of this?"
If you'd like to change something -- not simply talk about it -- ask more questions, like "What is this? Can I change it? If so how?" and "What action can I take"?
Do you feel that you're not enough? You don't fit in? That you must strive to become something that your parents, teachers, friends, bosses, media, governments or others have told you that you should be?
Certainly you couldn't possibly be enough just as you are! You need to be something better, right?
What if there was nothing wrong with you? What if being you -- just as you are -- was exactly right?
What if it were more than OK? What if the world actually needs the full range of your talents and abilities that you've been told your whole life were wrong?
What would that be like? Do you know? If you'd like to find out, ask "What if being me could change the world?"
If you're not clear on who you are, ask "If I were me, who would I be?" and "What's right about me that I'm not getting?"
What if you could be you and change the world?
What have you decided you don't want in your life? People who lie, cheat and steal? Unreliable and flakey people? Bossy and know-it-all people? What else?
How much energy do you spend judging others in an effort to keep certain people out of your life? Does it ever work? Is it fun for you? Does it expand your life in ways you'd like?
If not, rather than judging and excluding, be in allowance and inclusive.
When you exclude, you define the limits of what you are willing to receive and shut off your access to infinite possibilities.
So when you notice you're trying to avoid someone, ask "What am I excluding here, that if I were to be in allowance of would contribute to my life in ways I can't yet imagine?"
Will this put you at the mercy of other people? No. When you are aware and inclusive, you will see what's going on and how to choose the bits that work for you.
Be aware that they may end up excluding you from their lives. Why? Some people are only interested in you so long as you're under their control.
When things don't work out the way you'd like, what do you do? Do you ask "What's right about this that I'm not getting?" What else is possible?" "Cute, not bright!" and "How does it get any better than this?"
Or do you try to find someone or something to blame? Do others blame you when things don't go right for them?
Blame means to find fault with, to hold responsible for, or to condemn as wrong.
Is blame real and true? Or is it an interesting point of view based on someone's view of right and wrong?
When you buy into the idea that "someone must take the blame" how much trauma and drama comes your way? How much energy do you spend excusing, defending or deflecting the blame? Is that fun?
If not, and you'd like to be free from the control of distractors like this, ask "Is this blame distracting me from creating the life I'd truly like?"
Are you in a relationship? How's it going? Perhaps you're looking to change an existing one, or create a new one?
Start by getting clear on your definition. What words do you use to describe your preferred one? Honour, trust, vulnerability, gratitude, allowance, gift/receive, communion, contribution, generative, generosity of spirit, joy, fun, freedom?
Words like serious, promise, love, commitment, respect, responsibility, give/take, protect, maintain, keep, right/wrong, meaningful, obligation, security, compromise? Or perhaps others?
Which words feel light? Which feel heavy? There is no correct answer, just an awareness of your preferences.
If you don't have the relationship you'd like now, you may be using a definition that doesn't match what you truly desire.
So get clear and create what you'd like, rather than what others tell you is right, ask "What does relationship mean to me"
Got clutter in your life? Are some things - work tasks, relationships, or actual stuff in the corner - piling up and weighing you down?
How often do you have on to habits, people and things, that you know deep down you'd really rather let go?
How much of your must-hang-onto-this comes from what you think other people will say? Obligations you imagine you have that may not be true?
What if you delegated the task? What if you created space in your life for people who made you smile? What if you reintroduced yourself to the corners of your house? What could you create as your life if you no longer cluing to things that you don't truly desire?
If you'd like to de-clutter and create more space, ask "I am hanging on to this for what reason?"
If it feels light to let it go, thank it and send it off on a new adventure with consciousness.
Not happy? Got problems?
Do you sometimes find problems with your life when everyone else seems to have them? Do you think if you didn't have problems you wouldn't be normal, you wouldn't fit in, and you certainly wouldn't have anything to talk about?
Misery loves company. What about you? Do you love company so much you create misery-filled problems?
Or have you bought the idea that being happy is somehow wrong?
What if being happy were OK? What if it were more than OK? Would you choose it and find new company?
So next time you think you have a problem, ask "Is this my way of fighting happiness?"
Would you be willing to choose how you'd really like to be, even if you have to smile on your own for a while until you infect others?
Is someone giving you hell? No matter what you do or say, you're always wrong? Perhaps you really did do something less than bright, and they're coming down on you hard?
How do you respond? Do you try to justify your actions and prove that you're not wrong and are doing your best?
Does that work? Even if you really did nothing wrong, do people believe you and make your life easy?
If you'd like to vacuum up all the bad feelings and start again, do this: first acknowledge the other person's point of view. Say "You're right. I'm wrong" three times, naturally in various ways.
Then ask "What can I do to make up for the damage I've done?" Check your energy matches thewords. Sarcastic or angry energy won't work. The magic is in the energy of allowance and vulnerability.
When you are willing to give up your points of view about being right, then you are free to create new possibilities.
At the very least, this will difficult people them off your back, so you can get on with the fun of living.
Yes. I know this is not a question. Sometimes no question will make it stop. So try this instead.
Some people love to fight. Do you?
Some will fight to the death to prove the rightness of their point of view. Some just like to fight for the fun of it. In either case, will anything you say or do change their mind and resolve the fight?
Do you ever see the insanity of an argument and try to stop it or change it with well considered and logical arguments? Does it ever work? Or do you get more frustrated, tangled and drawn into the fight?
If you don't enjoy arguing and would like to move beyond the with to new possibilities, smile and say "You're right. I'm wrong" three times.
You're not agreeing the other person is right. You're acknowledging their right to their point of view, and you are being in allowance of them not seeing yours.
The words are easy. The energy behind the words might take practice. Saying these words sarcastically or angrily will not work. Your energy must be of complete allowance.
Will they work? Next time someone wants a fight, use them and find out.
Is work usually hard for you and not much fun? Do you think that's just the way it has to be? That it's wrong to show that you enjoy your job, or that doing things elegantly – getting the best results for the least effort – is somehow cheating?
When you were young, did your parents frown and complain about their day at work? Do you do that now?
Would you like to enjoy work more and get better results more easily? If so, start by giving up all the fixed points of view you have about work. Then ask "What if work were easy and fun?"
Are you willing to enjoy every moment of your work life, and get the best results, and make money?
It is possible. Many people create good income from doing things they enjoy all the time. How? They choose to do things they enjoy well, rather than suffer and do badly things they don't.
Happiness is just a choice and a smile is very good for business.
Always feeling down? Can't seem to shift the blues?
Perhaps there something about being sad that actually works for you?
It may help you fit in with others around you. It may deliver the attention you crave. Or it may simply fill in your emptiness and distract you from the rest of life.
This is not wrong and you are welcome to keep sadness if it truly works for you.
If it doesn't and you'd rather be happy, then know you can ask for it.
Until you ask a question you may simply not be aware that somewhere, somehow you value sadness, for whatever reason.
Are you ready for change? Then ask "What the value of being sad?"
Feeling down? Got a long list of reasons why the world sucks and your life is no good?
Sure, it's easy to get that way. No work. No money. No freedom. Stress levels are high. This is how much of the world is functioning on default to fear and worry.
Would you like to default differently?
Then choose to be happy.
What if it really were that simple?
Ask “What if happiness were just a choice?” and smile.
What can you do when things go 'wrong'? Ask another question like “What's right about this that I'm not getting” or even better "What's funny about this that I'm not getting?" and smile again.
What if your smile alone invited others to a different default?
Are you feeling ill or exhausted? Do you have aches and pains that baffle the doctors? Baffle you?
Before you start on a carousel of drug-taking to see if you can alleviate the symptoms, ask “What am I sick and tired of?”
Maybe it's doom and gloom stories in the media? Not being able to visit or hug loved ones? Or being told what to do but your own questions and points of view are censored. Or something else like housework/home schooling/working from home/what else?
Whatever that is for you, when you think of it and groan and slump, worry and fear, or stress and sweat ask “What else is possible?” and “Can I change this? If so, how?”
Perhaps simply choose not to listen to/switch off/walk away from the stories? Or ask "What information do I need?" and "What action can I take?" - repeat - until you no longer feel sick and tired.
What if your body's discomfort was it screaming at you to change something and create a new life, greater than you could have imagined?
Suffering? In pain? Frustrated? Someone doing you wrong? Rather than going into the no good, wrong, trauma and drama default, ask “What's funny about this I'm not getting?”
For example, have you ever tried to tell someone something SO AMAZING that you had just found out and that had changed your life, and you just wanted to tell everyone because you knew it would change their lives too? Did they call you a looney and laugh at you? Did you try every-which-way to explain, again and again, until you started doubting yourself?
What if instead of making yourself wrong, you laughed at yourself being hung out to dry like a rubber chicken? What's funny? Um rubber chicken...I mean a rubber chicken says nothing and makes people laugh.
Or maybe you're in a relationship that's on a wash cycle of wring-your-heart-dry? What's funny about that? Gotta be something. Even if it's to laugh at yourself for pushing the same old wring-me-out-now button and expecting a different result.
Cute, Not Bright.
What's great about laughing? It boosts your oxygen and feel-good body bits and kicks you out of the self-pity spiral. And did you know that joy and happiness can be *infectious*?
Then when you've done, or while you're still laughing, you get to make another choice. Are you willing to see more of life's funny side and choose for you?
Do you sometimes do things that, well, just don't work out? In fact, you create complete rubbish?
When you do this, do you default to how bad, wrong, terrible and awful you are? Yes, you're a failure, just like they always said you were.
How does that feel? Does it help you at all?
Probably not. So what if instead, you acknowledged that you can be an awesome creator of rubbish?
Say "Gee, I'm cute, but not bright!" Then laugh and ask "What's right about this I'm not getting?" and "What else is possible?"
If you can create magnificent rubbish, you can undoubtedly create magnificent magnificence too. You just have to ask and take notice.
What's the value of making yourself wrong anyway? It's much more fun to be Cute, Not Bright.
Are you frustrated or upset by anyone in your life? Is someone driving you crazy? Are they too loud, too bossy, too flaky, too up-down-turn-around, too...add your pet peeve here.
Would you like more ease in your life when you're around them, assuming you have to, or would like to be around them?
If so, ask “What am I grateful to them for?” and acknowledge them for that.
There will always be at least one thing, if not more. Parents who drive you nuts, and are always there to help you with your kids. A friend who is predictably unpredictable, and has shown you people function differently. A lover who picks insane fights, and is great at....um....other things.
When you acknowledge someone for who they are, and are grateful for their great bits, you are free and empowered to make the most of the great bits, without being at the effect of the rest.
Something not working in your life? Feeling unhappy or stuck? Do you see yourself as a victim and without hope? Do you think you're hard up and done over by someone?
Are these points of view limiting you, preventing you from creating the life you'd really like? Would you like to change that?
People stay in the role of the mournful victim all the time because it has some value for them. For example
On the other hand, some people simply don't realize they have the choice to change.
Was that you? Now you know you can choose, would you like to? If so ask “What's the value of hanging on to this?” If it has no value, you would hang on to it for what reason?
The reality is, you always have choice.
Do you know people who sometimes say or do not-nice things. Maybe you have some in your social media comments feed right now?
Does this upset you and leave you scratching your head, wondering why they would do or say that? Does it distract you from what you'd rather be doing?
Are they an ELF or a rattlesnake? An ELF is an evil little freak (or other word starting with F) who simply enjoys being mean for fun. While nature has designed rattlesnakes to bite you whenever they feel threatened. That's just what they are.
When you make them wrong and get sucked into the trauma and drama of what they do, they are controlling your life.
As long as you see them for what they are, in total allowance, you are empowered. Total allowance means you appreciate them as an ELF or rattlesnake. That's just who they are. Then if you like, you are free to enjoy their great parts.
So when people like this show up in your life, ask yourself “Truth, is this an ELF or a rattlesnake?”
This will remind you that no matter what they say or do, it has nothing to do with you, and you don't need to buy it as real.
And remember, you when you recognise them, you can also choose to smile and walk away/hang up/delete/remove them from your life.
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