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Success Harmony Newsletter
"LET 'EM FLIRT"
know about your life, but mine seems way too busy at times. There is this
project to work on, this client to speak to, that home repair to attend
to, and soon enough it seems like there is barely time to breathe. Or
to take time to really be there for what is happening in the moment.
On a recent
business trip flight, I was hoping to get some work done. The flight was
full but sharp elbows keep nosy neighbors at bay, so that didn't worry
me. However, when a woman and her two-year old boy sat in front of us,
I wasn't so sure there would be the kind of peaceful environment I was
looking for. I put my sternest look on my face and proceeded to scribble
down my notes. This became rather difficult in a few moments as the boy
in the seat in front of me decided that he was in an amusement park and
that the airplane chair was really a rocking chair trying to take off
to space. And he was going to make it take off, no matter what. He banged
himself on the back of the seat, he stomped his legs, and waved his arms
around enough to make me wonder if he'd take off before the airplane did.
I was a little annoyed. Couldn't his mother control this child? Couldn't
she see he was disturbing the hardworking serious person behind him? After
a few minutes of the disturbance, it dawned on me that there was a choice
for me to make. I could continue being stressed by the child and I could
probably manage to create a scene dramatic enough for the boy to regret
he ever got on the plane. Or I could be in the moment about this situation.
Give in rather than resist it. So I peeked over the seat in front of me
and made a face at the little boy.
I think I
freaked him right out. His big eyes bulged out even bigger and he forgot
for a moment that he was trying to get the chair to take off into outer
space. He didn't know what to make of the development for one short moment.
Then, curiosity got the best of him, he stood on his chair, peeked back
at me and made a face back. So I made another one. He did, too. So did
I. Soon enough, I was revisiting my own years of being a little kid. We
made faces, he threw his shoe at him, I put the shoe on his head for a
hat, he put his hat on his foot for a shoe, we made paper airplanes, and
had enough fun in a ten minute span that I wondered if a flight attendant
would throw both of us off the plane.
the magical thing happened.
The boy got
tired. He had played enough. He had explored the fantasy world of shoes
and hats and pretend rockets to the fullest and there was nothing more
to do. So he just slumped in his chair and fell asleep. And I could get
back to the work I wanted to do in the first place. But instead of having
won that quiet space by intimidation, I won it by giving in to the flirtation
of the moment. Had I chosen to be righteous, I would have continued to
feel upset. The boy's imagination would have been deflated. My neighbors
would have felt embarrassed about the situation, whether they were on
my side or the side of the mother in front of me. Having allowed the moment
to develop, I felt rejuvenated, content, and energized to do what I needed
speaking to one hat vendor at a beach in Mexico years ago. He said, "You
people in North America live to work. Here, we work to live. We might
have fewer possessions than you, but we have more fun." That simple
conversation has come back to me many times over the years, but it is
sometimes hard in our ambitious culture that tells us our time is not
worth much if we are not achieving something with it. In my Manhattan
life, it is more common to see fathers yapping on the cell phone while
pushing a stroller than it is to see them playing ball or playing tag
or some other silly game. Statistics continue to tell us that North American
parents spend maybe 10 minutes per day of quality time with their children.
The rest might be spent in the same room but not being together.
If you also
get "too busy" with your life at times, I have a challenge for
you. Every so often, look up from what you are doing. What is going on
around you? Is there a sunset happening outside the building you stayed
late to work? Is there a child tugging at your shirt, asking you to look
at the latest drawing they did? Is there a cat that brought you a disgusting
old toy mouse that she wants you to throw for her? Notice the moment -
and give in just for a little while. What do you notice when you do that?
Just a little more alive? Just a little happier and connected to yourself
and the world around you?
it feels like time has stood still for you for a few moments and you feel
like returning back to your busy life, notice two things. One, how little
time the diversion actually took. Two, how much more effective you are
when you go back to work.
sunshine and smiles,
be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something
else is the greatest accomplishment."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
"When the power of
love overcomes the love of power then the world will experience true peace."
"Isolation tends to exhaust
the energy charge of the soul."
The Urantia Book