Monday, February 20, 2012

Imagine That Everyone Is Enlightened Except You

This strategy gives you a chance to practice something that is probably completely unacceptable to you. However, if you give it a try, you might find that it's one of the most helpful exercises in self-improvement.

As the title suggest, the idea is to imagine that everyone you know and everyone you meet is perfectly enlightened. That is, everyone except you! The people you meet are all here to teach you something. Perhaps the obnoxious driver or disrespectful teenager is here to teach you about patience, the punk rocker might be here to teach you to be less judgmental.

Your job is to try to determine what the people in your life are trying to teach you. You'll find that if you do this, you'll be far less annoyed, bothered, and frustrated by the actions and imperfections of other people. you can actually get yourself in the habit of approaching life in this manner and, if you do, you'll be glad you did. Often, once you discover what someone is trying to teach you, it's easy to let go of your frustration. For example, suppose you're in the post office and the postal clerk appears to be intentionally moving slowly. Rather than feeling frustrated, ask yourself this question, "What is he trying to teach me?" Maybe you need to learn about compassion - how hard it would be to have a job that you don't like. Or perhaps you could learn a little more about being patient. Standing in line is an excellent opportunity to break your habit of feeling impatient.

You may be surprised at how fun and easy this is. All you're really doing is changing your perception from "Why are they doing this?" to "What are they trying to teach me?" Take a look around today at all the enlightened people.