Monday’s Meditation: On Thinking Small & Big Picture, Simultaneously
As healthy people, we want to feel good now.
And in order to do that, we want to communicate sentiments, resolve mistakes, repair what has broken, and vent our frustrations as quickly as we can.
This inclination is a sign of maturity; holding grudges, not owning up to our shortcomings, or not communicating our feelings in a timely fashion are many things, but they certainly aren’t happiness-building, relationship-sustaining, success-producing measures.
Just as we need to be future-leaning in our perceptions of challenging situations by reminding ourselves of their purpose, we also need to ensure that our actions are not merely desperate attempts in the moment to re-establish a status quo, but are designed with the future in mind.
If we’re so focused on the situation at hand that we fail to see how it connects to dynamics of the past or how it will influence situations of the future, then any reconciliation, arrangements or practices made in this limited mindset will be equally bound in time and space.
The key, then, is to both take positive action to bring about alignment, happiness, and understanding right now, and understand how right now is one link on a longer chain.
We need not only to be communicating in such a way that we feel heard in the moment or we ensure any arguments that may have arisen are resolved. We need to be asking ourselves, “Am I communicating this in a way that will enable lasting change?”
Or: “How can I make not only this one client happy, but institute policies that will ensure all future clients receive the best possible services?”
Or: “I feel like I keep finding myself in the same situation and I’m tired of it. What change can I institute for myself now so that going forward I don’t have to keep repeating this scenario?”
What we do now does affect what will happen tomorrow, or at some point in the future.
Whether we perceive situations now as being singular events or situational constructs affects our preparedness to deal with them swiftly and correctly later on.
At the very least, we should take a moment afterwards by ourselves–after the argument has been resolved or the stress has been abated or the deadline has been met–to review how we handled ourselves, to see where or how we might have done better, to notice where we started to veer off track, and to decide, now, how we think it best to handle similar situations in the future.
Maybe that means you won’t discuss certain topics with that one friend.
Maybe it means you’ll be more attentive to your partner’s needs.
Maybe it means you won’t take on that type of client.
Maybe it means you’ll establish a protocol, design a template, implement a date night.
Whatever it is for you, the good news and the bad news is this: you are expected to be your best self right now and later on, too. You’re never off the hook for treating yourself, your loved ones, and your customers with care and excellence.
Start now. When you do, you might notice something counter to this entire post happens: even beyond finding yourself in similar situations and being better equipped to handle them, you might begin to notice those situations disappear entirely.
Lessons, when learned, don’t need to keep repeating themselves.
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