Tail of the Elephant
Posted by upliftingthoughts4u
There is a tale about three blind men who are holding onto different parts of an elephant. One is holding a leg, saying: “This elephant is like the trunk of a tree.” Another is holding onto the tail, stating: “This elephant is like a snake.” Another is holding onto the trunk, who says: “No, it is like a really thick rope.” Thinking about it, they are all correct in their descriptions. But does it really describe an elephant? Nope.
You see, when one is looking at a situation, probably negative, one only sees it from a personal take on the facts. Other people could see it far differently.
We get so addicted to our own point of view, however, that we think that is all there is. In fact, we do not look outside of our own perceptions to answer a question, respond to a situation (either positive or negative), formulate a plan of action, or even decide to withdraw from the world at large, experiencing depression, angst, or fear.
If one were to suggest that there are other alternatives, most of us do not listen unless it already supports our point of view. The rest just falls away.
If one knows someone who has had such pain in his/her life/heart that withdrawal has become the only answer, how do you show your compassion to that person? As she/he clings madly to the problem, do you get angry? Do you yell at him/her, trying to get through the wall that was placed there on purpose for defense/protection? If you can make no sense of the situation, which keeps deteriorating like a sinking ship, what are you to do if you care about that person? Stand by and watch it go down? That is painful, indeed, to watch.
Try to not forget that personal choice rules here. You cannot save someone who does not really want to be saved. Complaints and suffering aside, the one who is sinking may not want to go quietly, but positive action, no matter how small or doable, is not considered an option by that person because it has already been discarded.
You can always care very much. You can pray. You can try to structure another possibility if you remember the point of reference that person is using. Remember the elephant? Which part does he/she have hold of?
This process is also true in an argument. People tend to defend their own ideas, no matter how strange, and keep holding on to their own version of the elephant, be it leg, tail, or trunk. It is hard to discuss your idea/resolution if you cannot see what idea they are attached to. You have to enter their thought processes, use active listening techniques, recognizing the anger (which is a tool to make the anger dissipate), and keep feeding back to that person what you are hearing. One cannot argue reasonably with an angry person. The anger must first be drawn off in order to have any reasoning heard. Most anger is caused because that person feels like he/she is not being heard, which is why active listening techniques work so well.
How about you? Have you looked at your world lately? Do you have things that make you feel very uncomfortable? Is there an “unreasonable” person — be it a boss, supervisor, coworker, teenager, child — in your life that is “making you crazy?” Join the rest of the world as there will always be someone to “drive you up a wall!” The question is, what part of the elephant are you holding on to? Try to remember that you can decide to go crazy or not as that truly is a decision within your personal power to control. You can even opt out of it entirely by using silence — one of the most ignored, and most successful, tools in the world. It will stop the acceleration.
Sometimes, especially with children, we have to be the needed guide to the “little person,” who thinks whatever action we require is unwelcome and unwanted. If we renege on our duty/responsibility as parents or teachers, the world will be a sadder place for it. That child will grow up without the tools to live his/her life and make better choices. There are so many children we see in stores these days who absolutely are not taught the word “NO means NO!” How many tantrums have you seen lately? It takes a lot of time, effort, and energy to try to keep doing what you know you need to do, often with little gratis afforded your efforts. Try to remember the elephant because you are teaching the point of view that is needed to get the child to see the bigger picture and not just about how it is he/she is thinking/attached to.
Have you heard the words, “Team Building?” It is a buzz word to get things done as efficiently as possible. How does one begin? Simple: Teach the elephant idea as each one is holding a part of the overall product in his/her expertise. Each one has to learn what his/her part is and how it relates to the whole. Then you make sure each one does his/her part. There is always a before and after part to each person’s particular piece. It must start somewhere and end someplace else. It is like hooking the pieces of a train together so it can begin to move. Usually, the whole train gets to moving forward, gathering speed as each learns and does what is needed. If one gets uncoupled, the whole train suffers from lack of forward motion and confusion. Then you have to figure out who got uncoupled, which is fairly obvious. The fix becomes clear much more easily.
I worked in the Government for many years. I used this concept successfully on so many needs that it was honed to simplicity itself. I worked with individual field offices, reporting requirements, travel, major household moves, regulations, timekeeping, performance appraisals, etc. This idea works, plain and simple.
What areas could you use this elephant idea in? Do you see the elephant, or are you personally hanging onto a leg, tail, or trunk? You will have to learn to shift your paradigm to see the elephant. Are you willing? You life would become so much simpler if you would “get out of your box” and look at the overall picture. Once you know the principle and can use it, you whole life could change because interactions would become easier. You could use it with anyone in your environment. Is it worth your effort? YES!
God’s blessings upon your journey!
Posted in Uplifting Thoughts
Tags: active listening, alternatives, anger, angst, answer, argument, blessings, children, choices, compassion, crazy, defend, depression, efficiently, elephant, fear, God, journey, metaphysics, negative, New Age, New thought, overall picture, pain, paradigm, perceptions, positive, reasoning, simpler, team building, thoughts, Truth, understanding, willing, wisdom, withdraw
Posted by upliftingthoughts4u
There is a Divine Polarity to all of life. Magnets have positive and negative poles. Most of our learning comes to us in that manner. We find out what we do not want after we get it, and thereby learn what we really do want and need. Sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it?
Some examples are:
Joy vs. Sadness
Truth vs. Lies
Peace vs. Chaos
Beauty vs. Ugliness
Life vs. Death
Love vs. Hate
Light vs. Darkness
Laughter vs. Tears
Good vs. Bad
Have you ever been in a relationship with someone, and, after it is over, said to yourself, “Well, I’ll never do that again! I will change my choices. I will ask more questions. I will be able to see that quality in someone else before I get involved.” Yet, sometimes history repeats itself?
We learn by bumps in the road, apparently, as a species.
I love the Pushmi-Pullyu in the Doctor Dolittle series. I have found that life is not all one thing or all another. It is usually a mixture of both polarities. The questions is: Can you separate them out clearly enough to be able to change your choices?
Add in the idea that rarely is anything simple. Usually, it is some of each. Whether it be a job, relationships, raising children, or any other topic that comes to mind. I personally know people who stay in a bad relationship because they have become vested in it–stuff rules as do habits. So they stay in the same old toxic atmosphere year in and year out. You can say the same for a job. Vesting dictates because one cannot afford a lower wage or whatever it takes to make a change. Raising children has its joys and its heart aches because these are little beings with an idea of how they want life to be and seek it out at their level, which may not be the wisest course. In short, simplicity is difficult, if not impossible, to find. That does not mean that one should not seek it. It only means that it is a gem of great price and should be sought after with due diligence.
There are positive aspects of all the above. Having been in a bad marriage or relationship, one can then seek more wisely to find a mate who is more compatible. If one is unhappy with the workaday life they have created, for whatever reason, one can seek that which will make them happier. Some Wall Street workers quit that life style and go to the country, finding a different way to live. Some go to college so they can change their resumes. In short, one can seek that which will give him/her a more positive balance in living.
Life is not like walking a tight rope without a safety net. Mankind can learn, grow, and change at will. Fear keeps us from doing that. It has been said that Fear of the Unknown is the greatest reason for not seeking a better answer. What one knows is better than looking for a challenge. The sameness of daily living is secure, no matter what the Happiness Quotient is.
I have been fortunate because I have accepted the challenges and sought Change and Balance in Living. I know what I want my life to look like. I have had to learn Forgiveness of myself and others in my journey. I have never thought that I would rather live alone than try to find that certain someone who will be my Best Friend for the rest of my life, someone I could grow old with, and someone who will be on the other end of this relationship. After all, relationships are TWO-WAY STREETS, not one-way. If one person is giving all the time while the other is taking all the time, no Happiness Quotient can be found. I have said that relationships are like a waltz, and I would rather dance through life with my partner than have somebody who is out of synch and not on the same page. I have been most fortunate to find my Best Friend. I would wish the same for you.
I started this article with many positive qualities which I consider necessary for my life. I endeavor to achieve my balance with them in some way, every day. I look for them. I accentuate their presence in my life. Instead of dwelling on the negatives, which are also present daily, I look for some way to lighten the day with laughter and the other ideas.
How about you? Are you willing to look at your Happiness Quotient and seek new ways to find Balance in Living? You will find that it is worth the time and effort to think about, seek, and find. Even if your life is good, it can always be better. Are you interested?
May your journey be blessed in every way. 🙂
Posted in Uplifting Thoughts
Tags: bad, Balance in Living, Beauty, Best Friend, change, chaos, children, choices, dance, darkness, death, find, good, Happiness Quotient, hate, job, journey, joy, laughter, life, light, Love, marriage, metaphysics, negative, New Age, New thought, partner, Peace, polarities, positive, questions, relationships, sadness, seek, simplicity, tears, think about, thoughts, Truth, understanding, vesting, waltz, wisdom