Most of us can envision a better world - a world in which each of us has the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of our family, ourselves and even the well-being of our planet. As we stand on the edge of our personal dream, we can look across to the horizon and know that its not easy to get there from here.
The terrain before us is difficult. Listening to the news we can see many hurdles before us: Trump Appointee Resigns After Bigoted Comments Surface, 5 Changes That Could Come From Leaving The Paris Climate Deal and World's Regard For U.S. Leadership Hits Record Low In Gallup Poll.
This article is Part 3 of the blog series Creating the World You Yearn For intended to help us collectively build a world worthy of our children and based on integrity of spirit and creative innovation. In Part 2 - The Grand Mystery, we acknowledged that creating such a world begins where we are today, uncovering our own Grand Mystery - that area of our lives that carries deep personal meaning and begs the Big Questions. Let it be known that each Big Question has a simple answer, but the route to the simple answer can be quite challenging. Yet, we must dare to yearn for a better world, decide who we are in the matter of it all and go forward unapologetically.
Standing on the terra firma - the solid ground - beneath our personal Grand Mystery we may look across the horizon to what we know is our simple solution for helping create a better world. But in between here and there is a vast Abyss; a boundless expanse that lies at the foot of our vision and our own simple solution that will create it. In other words, it is easy to dream up a better world, but not so easy to achieve it.
In the Grand Mystery example used in Part 2 - "Why do such deep cultural divides persist and why are people so resistant to change?" - we might apply the simple solution "... do unto others ...." This would work in a similar way as other possible solutions such as the idea of non-violence, or non-attachment, but let's go further than creating non-behavior.
As we gaze across the Abyss to our own vision of a better world, in my example where cultural divides do not inhibit our humanity - or our progress - we must come up with a way to cross it. Looking at the path before us we can prepare ourselves for the ups and downs of the journey and secure our footing.
In preparation for creating the world you yearn for, all you need is a guiding principle and a compass that will keep you going in your own right direction.
Abundance - The Guiding Principle
Before taking your first step into the Abyss it is important to define your vision from a position of abundance. You must have a clear vision of your better world. What would be better, what would it look like, sound like, feel like? How would people interact, how would problems be solved? It is all too easy for us to think in terms of scarcity, or a lack of something, than it is to think of how things might look, in detail, in their ideal, fully realized end state. Be very careful here. If you think in terms of what is wrong, or what's lacking, you will invariably create more of what's lacking - the Law of Attraction, right?
In our example of "cultural divides", what if we were to think in terms of cultural mixes or multiple perspectives that would create a population where together we are a better people; where multiple perspectives create more robust solutions, relationships, products or communities. It feels more directionally correct to gain multiple perspectives and build robust ideas - framing the idea from a position of abundance - than it does to pick a perspective and eliminate the rest.
As you become clear about the end state of your Grand Mystery - before you cross the Abyss - give thoughtful consideration to framing your solution using words that reflect abundance, words that add rather than those that diminish or describe what is wrong. Start from a position of fullness and abundance rather than from a lack of something. Your vision might start with a question: "What if ...."
As Albert Einstein so aptly noted:
‘We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them’
Your Directional Compass
I once worked with the Chief Engineer on the Appollo program who shared with me that the route to the moon was not a straight line, but instead a continuous series of forward travel with thousands of mid-course corrections along the route allowing the ship to continue its directrionally correct trajectory to its final destination. So, too, is our path to the world we yearn for.
It is inevitable that we will make some great decisions and take actions that will propel ourselves forward. It is also possible that we become discouraged along the way, or take action that does not give us our intended outcomes. Sometimes we simply stall or begin a route that, if continued, will take us someplace else. It is our job to remain directionally correct and to NOT go someplace else.
Creating the world we yearn for requires us to commit to our future and show up day by day, sometimes minute by minute, in pursuit of our dreams. Forward movement often requires sheer tenacity - the ability to keep moving toward your destination even in times when you feel like a 'fart in a blizzard'. You can always tell if you are going in the right direction - or not. If you find yourself stalled, or going someplace else, mid-course correct and resume your actions in the direction of the world that you yearn for.
As you stand on the precipice of your journey, peer across the Abyss and prepare to begin your adventure. Root your Grand Mystery in a detailed vision of what is possible in the world you yearn for, ask the Big Questions and pursue your Quest to the simple solution knowing that constructive, abundant thought produces the outcomes you desire and that the path through scarcity leads someplace else.
In our shared journey,
Before you read the next installment of Creating the World You Yearn For, Part 4 of the series, take some time to define for yourself the following:
Jenifer Zetlan, author of The Incredible Power of Inspiration: Creating the Life You Yearn For, is a behavioral scientist and motivational speaker who is committed to helping people live inspired lives. With advanced degrees in psychology and behavioral sciences from UCLA, she has led numerous seminars and classes in psychology, leadership and organization in University settings and throughout many Fortune 500 and non-profit organizations. She has also enjoyed successful careers in psychology, aerospace, and heath care.
Jenifer has been reading, studying and speaking in the areas of psychology, philosophy and spirituality for over 30 years. She is an ardent yoga practitioner and instructor in the Bay Area
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