So you woke up, went to the bathroom, looked in the mirror and decided you didn’t like what was looking back at you. You turned your face toward the sink and began thinking about events in the past that brought joy and happiness to your life which immediately put a smile on your face. You then looked back up to the mirror and saw the reality of TODAY. The smile vanished.
This is the story I hear people talking about on a regular basis. If they could only return to a time where life wasn’t so hectic; where mounting responsibilities didn’t overwhelm and unlimited time provided good choices.
Enjoying the past is one thing; living in it is another. What does it take to climb out of the hole many of us have gradually created over time and begin to enjoy the quality of life we deserve and desire? It begins in the MIND with the instructions to the rest of the body that life moving forward will be following a new path. We shall call this new path:
THE PATH OF INTEGRATION
This path begins by designing a foundation needed to support your goals. Health, family, friends, spiritual practices (if so inclined,) work/career are examples of HEADINGS needed to build a strong foundation. The individual must then decide for him or herself what sub components will be necessary to complete each heading. Each sub heading is important and must be provided adequate time to prevent this structure from developing areas of weaknesses. The following chart is an example of HEADINGS with COLUMNS.
Each heading by itself (ex. HEALTH, FAMILY FRIENDS, etc…) cannot achieve the BALANCE needed for quality living. As the individual columns are achieved, they provide the groundwork necessary to begin the process of INTEGRATION.
INTEGRATION is the process of incorporating each of the columns into our DAILY lives. This is NOT some abstract concept that requires deep contemplation. As we gain the skill necessary to complete each column, it becomes a source of strength and security we begin to understand and rely on. Our MIND, the source of our original dilemma, begins using our eyes (as well as the rest of our senses) to view life from a new perspective. It becomes a natural process to begin blending these individual columns into an amorphous shape that becomes our own unique character and personality. The MIND begins to recognize the INTERNAL POWER it has and begins controlling the body and its thought processes. Previously, the feeling of helplessness was controlled by EXTERNAL POWERS, notably toxic environmental factors (ex. Family, Work, Lifestyle, etc…) resulting in inner turmoil and constant conflict. This life draining pattern of trivial incidences occurring gradually over the course of time caused infinite “scaring.” How could so much pain and suffering be experienced from what we perceived as “minor” physical and emotional damage?
As we return to the bathroom mirror and lift our faces to carefully evaluate the person we see, how many of us don’t even recognize the image staring back at anymore? Are you ready to regain control over your life?
With a new understanding of the PROCESS of INTEGRATION, each of us has the opportunity to build our own new foundations based on the principles we decide are important in our lives. We design the columns based on our own individual wants and needs. As our own independent amorphous shapes begin to form, we begin to realize that the INTEGRATION PROCESS does more than create personal happiness and balance. It creates greater societal awareness and the ability for cohesiveness. For the first time we begin to see opportunity in a vision to help more than just ourselves. We begin to realize this becomes the FIRST STEP necessary to laying a greater FOUNDATION for the rest of our world; a world we are now willing to accept responsibility for and help build and shape TOGETHER.
An article that provides a serious tone for self improvement is best accomplished if it can provide a smile as well. I thought you might enjoy the following: