COPYRIGHT 2018-2020 BY DWIGHT GOLDWINDE

Most of us are trying to move through our lives unaware that the teachers that could transform everything are all around us and we're not making use of them. We remain unaware of these great teachers because we think we are their teachers instead of them being ours. Who are these great teachers?

Young children, especially those between the ages of two and five.

Since, as a group, children are the happiest people in the world, we should be constantly looking to them as our idols and inspiration for how to live.

Let the curiosity of children inspire our own curiosity.
Let the playful and adventurous spirit of children inspire our own spirit.
Let the openness and expressiveness of children inspire our own self-expression.
Let the presence of children to be in the moment inspire our own presence.
Let the open friendliness of children inspire our own friendliness.
Let the passion of children inspire our own passion.
Let the child's natural love of life and living inspire our own love of life.

Desire is life. Life is desire. Without desire there is no life.

Yet it becomes problematic when we think that our desires should always be fulfilled. We become like the spoiled child who's upset with others (or circumstances) when they don't get what they want.

In fact, it can be even more problematic when our desires are so fulfilled that they disappear. Witness the dullness of no hunger for food. Witness the satiation of both the husband and the wife who no longer desire each other. The most salient aspect of depression is the cessation of desire.

Learn to enjoy the edge of desire. Learn to savor desire regardless of whether it can be fulfilled completely. Celebrate desire as a fundamentally delicious aspect of life.

If we touch the hot stove, we move away from it quickly. Smart.

However, when it comes to mental pain, we often do the opposite. If we're bored with our study or work, we tolerate it instead of either quitting or finding a way to enjoy it. Boredom is a type of mental pain we should pay attention to.

If we're blaming another (or ourselves), then we often allow it to continue (or even indulge in it) instead of finding a way to let go of being the victim. Blame and guilt are types of mental pain we should pay attention to and find a way to eliminate (just as we would with physical pain).

If we're worrying or anxious, we often tolerate it rather than make friends with our fear so that it can serve us and dissipate when no longer needed.

All suffering lives in the future.

Are you worried? You're worried about your future.

Are you depressed? You're depressed about your future.

Suffering cannot live in the now.

If you're suffering, bring yourself back to now. Imagine there's no past. Imagine there's no future. There is ONLY now. Just NOW. Notice that now is okay.

If you feel too safe in your marriage or your relationship, you can easily take your spouse or relationship for granted (a big danger).

If you feel too safe in your job, you can easily take your job for granted (a big danger).

If you feel too safe in your health, you can easily take your health for granted (a big danger).

If you feel too safe in your beliefs and what you think is true, you can easily blind yourself (a big danger).

Beware of too much safety or the wrong type of safety!

Yes, it feels good in the moment to blame someone and they might even change their behavior, but at what cost to them and to your relationship with them?

Yes, it may seem like you're more in control by blaming yourself (guilt), but at what cost to being your own best friend?

Yes, you might get more done by packing your schedule back-to-back, but at what cost to the quality of the results and to the enjoyment of your life?

Yes, worrying about your future might make it a little better, but at what cost to enjoying your life today?

Yes, by wearing a mask with others most of the time, they may think better of you, but at what cost to enjoying your life and being your own best friend?

Many books talk about the dangers and problems of doing things concurrently. For example, texting and driving at the same time can be dangerous.

I agree. But, for many cases, doing things concurrently can be great. It depends.

Here are two examples where I do something concurrently and it adds a lot of value to my life:

While working at my stand-up computer, I am standing on my operational full-body vibration machine (like right now!). I am getting good exercise at the same time as I do computer work...and neither is suffering for it.

Whenever I leisurely eat my lunch each day, I am reading a Kindle book at the same time. I am enjoying a leisurely meal at the same time as I am reading...and neither is suffering for it.

If we look for them, life presents many great opportunities for concurrency that increases benefits yet with little or no cost.

If you're not okay with something, it's because you're resisting it, you're resisting the way that something is.

Often, however, not only are we resisting something, but we are also resisting that resistance. In other words, we're not okay that it's not okay.

The first step then is to be okay with that it's not okay. After that, you can undo your resistance that makes it not okay (but only if you like).

I used to think often about the meaning of life. But, like everyone else, I never figured it out.

Instead, I discovered that asking about the meaning of life is a meaningless question.

However, I also discovered that I only thought about the meaning of life whenever I was unhappy. As long as I was happy, the question seemed irrelevant.

Therefore, if the meaning of life ever starts to concern me again, I know it's a good signal for me to focus on making sure I am enjoying the process of my life and the dance of the journey.

Often we're hesitant about making a request because the way it may be heard will damage the relationship.

With a little finesse, the chances of this happening can be much smaller. Try this approach:

"I'd like to ask your help on something. But I want to be certain you will say 'no' to me if you aren't sure you can be happy in saying 'yes.' Can I rely on you to do that?"

By contextualizing your request this way, you're showing respect to the value of your relationship with them.