Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Week 1 - Embracing Your Potential Chapter 1

So I read the first chapter in Embracing Your Potential, and here are the important points I found:

-He discusses what he calls 'highlights' which are "treasures that nurture us, make us feel good, and free us to dance with life." They are basically the small moments or achievements in every aspect of your life that bring you joy and happiness. And he believes that those are key to being happy. He highlights five areas of ones life that these highlights can be found in:

-Human contact (friendship, love, a kind hug, etc.)
-Nature (An ocean, a pretty tree or animal, moonlight, etc.)
-Play, physical activity, and sport
-Personal growth or accomplishment (creating something, learning something new, being in control of your destiny, etc.)
-Sensual experiences (taste, smell, feel, etc.)

He feels that keeping note of your highlights as you experience them is a key way to a positive outlook in life. Sort of an extended "the glass is half full" idea.

In addition to just acknowledging your highlights in daily life, he expresses the importance of having balance with which areas your highlights lie in:

"There is a danger in living all your highlights in one domain....a potential problem is if the sport, person, or performance domain declines or is pulled away from you...you may experience a gaping void."

And this is something I'm having an issue with I believe. I have recently been losing my desire to play a game that I'm highly addicted to. To be brief, I've been playing the game 10 hours or more every day for months and on and off for a few years now. I've played maybe a handful of hours in the last week at this point, and I'm not having much of an urge to go back. But along side that, I've felt a creeping and worsening depression the less I play it. Like the void he's talking about. I even had a brush with picking smoking back up last night but threw the pack out before I could make it to three days in a row. I feel myself lacking the one thing that has taken my time and provided me with a sense of purpose for 3 years now. And it's painful.

So this leads me to believe I have a very bad balance of where my highlights are. I need to work on this.

A few other points I found worth the ink from my bright yellow pen:

"Be all here when you are here."
"When you move from one domain or experience to the next, shift focus so yo can be wherever you are, totally."
"Carry a positive perspective into every pursuit."
"Whenever demands become excessive or visions blur to negative, take more care of your own needs and re embrace the simple joys within your life."
"The biggest difference between joy and misery in relationships, work, and performance lies in the extent to which we open ourselves to find and appreciate the positive things within ourselves, others, and our daily experiences."

At the end of the chapter he also has a list of questions to ask your self. The questions fall into four categories:

-Questions of balance
-Highlight questions
-Relationship questions
-Workplace and performance questions.

Over the next four days I will answer all of these questions on here. But for tonight I think I'm done. Back to trying to read chapter 1 of the Famous Artists Course.

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