If you were to say, “The world is full of cold, self-centered, arrogant people who just don’t care”, you may be surprised to discover that I agree with you. You’re right. I’ve been out in the world and I’ve seen and experienced these things much more than I care to in life.
It’s one of the reasons why I do what I can to combat such things and, if possible, set the kind of examples I’d like to see more of. And that, in turn, is why most of the stories I share are lighthearted, fun, humorous, or positive.
But having said that, if you were to say, “The world is full of warm, caring, and generous people who go out of their way to make it a better place”, I would also agree with you.
Because I’ve seen these kinds of people, too. In abundance. They’re everywhere. You read that right. They’re everywhere. (And if you’re reading this, I think the chances are very good that you are one of these people).
The fact is, the truth in either of the above statements depends largely on where you look and what you’re looking for — because in either case, I’m confident you’ll find it.
And the same is true for most places where you direct your attention. And this is an important concept to understand, by and large, we find what we go looking for.
“What you seek is seeking you.” — Rumi
And what we choose to go looking for in life — the good or the bad — can have a dramatic affect on not only our view of the world, but on our sense of well-being as a result of that view.
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of “disaster,” I remember my mother’s words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers — so many caring people in this world.” — Fred Rogers
Depending on whether we look for something good or something bad, the results we find often reinforce whatever belief (or value system) we held to be true when we started searching.
When one believes the world is full of cold, self-centered, arrogant people who just don’t care, one’s subconscious mind goes about proving they’re right.
“The primary function of the subconscious mind is to follow the instructions of the conscious mind. It does this by “proving” that whatever the conscious mind believes is true. In other words, the job of the subconscious mind is to prove the conscious mind is always “right.”
So, if you consciously believe that you can’t be, do, or have something, the subconscious will create the circumstances and find the people to prove that you are ‘right’.” — Robert Anthony
When you expect rudeness from people, you are setting yourself up to be more attentive to it, even if it’s something you don’t want. And when you are more attentive to something, you are more likely to find it — at the expense of not being attentive to the things you’re not paying attention to.
For example, if I told you to stop for a minute and look around you for all the things that are the color red, your brain will register all the things around you that are red and, as a result, you would be able to list them with a high degree of accuracy.
But then if I immediately told you to close your eyes and now list all the things that are the color blue in the room you just searched, there is a good chance you would miss several of them — because you weren’t looking for blue, you were looking for red.
Now, I’m talking colors here, but I could easily be talking about the things that irritate or upset you.
If you go looking for irritating things, it will often be at the expense of registering all the things that are pleasant or beautiful around you — because whatever you focus on is at the expense of whatever you don’t focus on.
“Energy flows where attention goes.”
If you want to see more of the things you desire in life, it’s important to make a conscious effort to be grateful for what you already have and always focus on what you want — and what you want to see more of — not on what you don’t want or the lack of something.
“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.” — Marcus Aurelius
The type of thoughts you hold in your head have a direct impact on the reality you perceive. This includes the severity of aches and pains you experience, as well as how gracefully you age.
“By paying attention to pain on a daily basis, we are wiring ourselves neurologically to develop a more acute awareness of pain perception, because the related brain circuits become more enriched. Your own personal attention has that much of an effect on you. This could be one explanation to how pain, and even memories from our distant past, characterize us. What we repeatedly think about and where we focus our attention is what we neurologically become. Neuroscience finally understands that we can mold and shape the neurological framework of the self by the repeated attention we give to any one thing.” — Joe Dispenza from Evolve Your Brain – The Science of Changing Your Mind
This is why it’s vital to always remember to focus on solutions, not problems, look for the good, and remain conscious of where you choose to focus your attention and how you direct your mental energy.
“Refuse to emotionally succumb to the negative events around you and tap your mental toughness to thrive in any environment. The good guy doesn’t always win and justice doesn’t always prevail, but where you direct your mental energy will always determine your attitude and it will always be controlled by you.” — Steve Siebold
Energy flows where your attention goes — make sure it’s where you truly want it.
Because when you really think about it, this world and everything we call life is amazing. It seems a shame for people to miss out on the good stuff because they’re not paying attention.
- Be a candle. Spread some light.
- Skip and volume control
- You don’t know what you don’t know
- The power of focus
- Level of difficulty
- Don’t search for things that you don’t want to find.
- Never stop looking for beautiful things.
- You are surrounded by love. By acceptance. By opportunities. Always.
- Anger and hate dig holes. Love and kindness move mountains.
- The problem with problems.
- It’s all there for you if you want it.
- Offsite: What you think you become