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Solving problems through a change in perspective

“Distance lends enchantment to the view” Thomas Campbell

changes in perspective

Sometimes it seems much easier to solve other people’s problems than our own. They look so much tinier in comparison.

This reminds me of the first time my son noticed a change in perspective. We were walking along a farm road with ploughed fields on both sides and, way off in the distance, a tractor. My son, about 3 years old at the time, noticed that the tractor was growing in size as we approached it. First it was minute then eventually it was way bigger than both of us.

It’s the same thing with other people’s problems. And then the danger is, when you get close enough, they hand you their rucksack and walk off with a relieved smile, not noticing that you are now carrying two rucksacks and wearing no boots.

What to do?

Trade both rucksacks for a pair of boots. Or simply put them down gently on the side of the road with a sign saying “help yourself”. Don’t look inside them one last time in case you might need anything in there. You don’t!

The mind is an enormous rucksack. It’s our job to empty it, rather than fill it. Or as some wise person once said, “Fill your rucksack only with moonbeams.”

2020 – week 1, day 1

Day 1 – decisions decisions…
The New Year started with a beautiful sunny day in my village, nearly 900 m above sea level. Could see the Alps right across Switzerland. Not a cloud in the sky.

Hasliberg above the fog about 5 pm

Hasliberg above the fog about 5 pm

Decided to cycle down into the valley as I was meeting two friends for a walk and lunch. (My first day of walking my talk, and doing my bit against climate change, by not using my car, unless absolutely essential. Discovered that public transport to our village starts 3 hours later on public holidays!) Took it as a good opportunity to pump up my bike tyres and cycle down the hill to the train station.
Decided to travel light and not take hiking shoes as the friends I was meeting weren’t Read more

Thanking all my American Angels

When I left the advertising industry (many moons ago) my creative director at the time passed on some advice that he had once been given: “Don’t look back, otherwise you will bump into trees and create other obstacles in the road ahead that weren’t there before…” At least that’s what I think he said. I remember being amused because I didn’t think I was leaving. It was the year our president Nelson Mandela was finally released from prison and I was full of hope and joy about the future of the country and had no intention of not returning.

Actually, all I had asked for was 6 month sailing sabbatical….Funny how everyone in the Read more

The love experiment

love versus hate

 My son and I tried this experiment over a decade ago while he was in primary school. We have just tried it again, 13 years later with the same results.  Each time, “love” jar forms a clear liquid at the bottom after a few weeks. Whereas the control jar goes all moldy. Astonishes me every time!
Try this simple experiment in your own kitchen. I would love to know if you get the same results.

How to do this experiment
The best time is straight after breakfast or whenevr you have leftover porridge, cooked oats or cooked rice.
In preparation, sterilize two glass jars by boiling them in a pot of water for 5 minutes. Then put some identical cooked oats porridge or rice into each jar and label them, and place both jars in the fridge. Then every day, or every other day, take out the one and say to it, “I love you. Thank you.”  Just ignore and leave the other in the fridge or, if you have the stomach for it, take the second jar out of the fridge occasionally and say to it: “I hate you. You are awful!”   (This time round, we mostly ignored the second jar and gave positive attention every few days to the other.) Compare the differences as the weeks pass.
As you can see from the images above and below, taken more than a month after first starting the experiment, we saw a huge difference in the 2 jars! ( The jar that got positive attention did not go moldy and over time developed a clear liquid at the bottom of the jar. The other jar did go moldy and the liquid was orange. Both times we tried this experiment we used cooked oats porridge and got the same results. This time we mostly just ignoring the 2nd jar instead of saying negative things to it.) I would like to hear back from anyone else who tries this experiment.

Attention as a creative act
The consequences if this experiment are profound. We have way more creative impact on ourselves and others than we realize. Puts another whole spin on judgement of self or others…


Read more

Some considerations about fear – Q&A with Markus Hirzig

Markus Hirzig

Markus Hirzig on Some considerations about fear
15 January 2019

Markus Hirzig has been mentoring people on this and similar topics for more than 30 years. As usual with Markus you’ll be surprised by his ideas yet deep down something shifts…

Are you taking enough space?
One of the breakthrough thoughts from Markus for you to ponder is that we feel fear because we contract our energy! Can we unlearn old habits of making ourselves smaller in order to survive?

Hmmm… powerful stuff!

Says Markus: “Some forms of fear have only to do with the space we take. Others to do with experiences….and some fears tell us something new is appearing…and then there might be more intense fears, exceeding the normal societal range, like phobias, trauma, when we experience accidents or very dangerous things….All these different fears may need a different approach or care taking. For some of the fears its only to take space again.”

You’ll find the replay of the first Guided meditation below and also some Read more

My Biggest lesson from 2018 – Reclaiming one’s sense of agency

If you had a tough time this past year, could it be that you are letting go of the same beast that I’ve been wresting this past year? This is a beast that is easy to see in others. Virtually impossible to see in oneself. This is about reclaiming your power and your agency and letting go of “Poor me, this isn’t fair!”
“life happens for you, not to you.”

When you aren't fully present

Small reminder to be more present

2018 was the “year of the fire” for me. A year ago my house nearly burnt down and this whole year stretched out into one long painful wrestle with authorities who felt I had been negligent for not checking what kind of light bulbs a professional Swiss electrical team had installed in my cupboards. It was incredibly tough going, particularly with the language barrier. I felt deeply and wrongly judged, but today I feel blessed for all that happened because in the process I was able to see and let go of a shadow I may never have seen otherwise. The entire year was full of master teachers. From my perspective, it felt like I was being continuously regressed to earlier developmental stages, each event giving me another taste of the enormous cost of “poor me this isn’t fair!”

I probably would not have been able to see this, and cut myself free, had it not been for Read more

Fog dancing

IMG_3762 fog lineI live mostly above the fog line, but sometimes find myself deep in it. It’s a continual dance. Between clarity and uncertainty, conviction and self doubt.

Have you noticed? This is what happens whenever you get to the top of any ladder. We arrive back at “same old, same old”. A nagging sense of recognition. Non sense. Just a deep knowing that I’ve been here before. The recognition that the ladder leads nowhere. Yet everywhere.

Soft clouds that can’t be walked across with a heavy heart or lead boots. It takes play and delight instead of many balloons and lots of hot air to walk above the clouds.

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