It’s Not Gonna Happen… So Please Stop Pretending.
How many times have you sought out good information and then ignored it? You listened to an inspiring Ted talk and then forgot about it by bedtime. You read a moving blog post and shared it with all your friends but now you can’t even recall what it said. Or better yet, you go to a seminar, or to therapy, and then take no action?
What is this about?
This is Normal.
Let’s not make it about right or wrong, but let’s just keep it accurate. It is normal to do nothing to change our destiny or the direction of our lives. It is normal to say one thing, and then continue to do another for years to come. It is normal to hear something that you KNOW will make a positive change in your life and the lives of your children, and STILL do nothing different.
Over the years, I have had some cases of very bright parents, who come to my seminars and then to therapy to get help. Yet, nothing really changes despite me pushing hard to be better. How is that possible?
It’s normal. If we simply look at how often humans are exposed to life-changing information and just simply make no change, we see this is the norm. Plain and simple.
How is That Possible that This is Normal?
We normally and conveniently forget life-changing information.
Yes, perhaps an over-simplification, but the essence of it is that we forget. We conveniently forget because our minds struggle to assimilate what we do not already know to be true. In fact, it’s hard to perceive what we do not already know, and the human mind ignores the validity of everything that poses a threat to strongly held beliefs. Thus, the ‘ego’ or mind forgets this new information because it’s just easier to carry on moment-to-moment with the same old habits of thought and action we have always had.
Could fear also play a role here? Of course, change not only represents a threat to all those deeply held patterns of belief and thought, but it also opens the door to some unknowns and for many of us, this is quite scary.
Could change require effort? Of course, it does! And for many of us, we feel too depleted already and thus the idea of effort makes us feel worse…so we abandon.
In each instance, we can readily find comfort (if that is what you seek) in stating conclusively, all if this is normal. Almost everyone tends to do it that way.
And yet, NOT everyone. There are those we might call ‘abnormal.’ They are abnormally happy. They are abnormally achieving. They are abnormally successful. They have abnormally pleasant and responsible children. So, what if we turn our attention to…
Five Important Pointers to Abnormality
The secret to being happy and successful is to abandon the normal. And to do so, it requires a bit of abnormal thinking and even more abnormal action. There are many, many pointers for a better, happier, and more successful life. If we are to integrate those pointers, we must begin to embrace the abnormal. (But only if you want more happiness, more contentment, and perhaps more success.)
In case you are interested, here are a few pointers…
- The abnormal never, ever say these words, “Oh, I know.” These are the words of the talkers and not the doers. These words ensure no change will happen. I often hear these words in my office, and they are the words of those who talk. Not those abnormal folks who take-action upon hearing new information. So, if you are one of those normal folks who seek the abnormal, stop saying ‘oh, I know.’ Instead, say I don’t really know that. Begin to see where that takes you.
- The abnormal are strangely curious about growth, change, and evolution. They seek information that challenges their thought process and stretches them to become more. They do not seek what supports the views they already hold on life.
- The abnormal do not mind discomfort, and in fact, realize that discomfort is the essential part that maintains growth and evolution. To avoid discomfort means that we seek comfort overgrowth, and in that choice, we ensure ‘normality.’ Learn to find comfort in the discomfort of growth and change, and life will reward you.
- The abnormal do not waste hours on Facebook, social media, or browsing the Internet. They do not engage in repeated conversations that cover the same complaints today that were harped on yesterday. They rarely have any idea about Downton Abbey or Game of Thrones. Every moment in life is viewed as a choice point, and the abnormal do not choose a timewaster over a more valued activity. In essence, they invest in treasured activity…not comfort-seeking activity. This is a key distinction.
- The abnormal do many abnormal things, but one of the most important is that they write down the important stuff of life. Most journal regularly, and in doing so, they can remember the lessons that the normal folks seem to forget. There is really no mystery here. It’s simply an abnormal habit of writing down the important stuff of life, so you can keep up with it.
Is there more to being abnormally happy, successful, and content? Of course, but the normal folks will want to read another book on this so they can say, ‘Oh, I know.’ But remember, those awesome ideas are not going to change anything if we stick to the normal path.
Go the other way. Just start honoring these simple pointers today and allow life to share some of its abnormally sweet rewards with you.