A Coaching Power Tool created by Aurora Heinemann
(Yoga and Wellness/Pet Loss, UNITED STATES)
To live happily is an inward power of the soul.
No one can be great, or good, or happy except through the inward efforts of themselves.
Frederick William Robertson
Happiness is inward, and not outward; and so, it does not depend on what we have, but on what we are.
Henry Van Dyke
“A beggar had been sitting by the side of the road for over 30 years. One day a stranger walked by. ‘Spare some change?’ mumbled the beggar mechanically holding out his baseball cap. ‘I have nothing to give you,’ said the stranger. Then he asked: ‘What’s that you’re sitting on?’ ‘Nothing,’ replied the beggar. ‘Just an old box. I have been sitting on it for as long as I can remember.’ ‘Ever looked inside?’ asked the stranger. ‘No,’ said the beggar. ‘What’s the point? There’s nothing in there.’ ‘Have a look inside,’ insisted the stranger. The beggar managed to pry open the lid. With astonishment, disbelief and elation, he saw that the box was filled with gold.” Eckhart Tolle
Many of us spend our day to day moments in the pursuit of happiness, like a prized a treasure at the end of the rainbow. What will make me happy? Maybe I need a new car. That will make me happy. I am so unhappy in my relationship. Maybe I need a new partner. Mine doesn’t make me happy anymore. Why can’t I just feel happy? I can’t find anything that makes me happy!! What is wrong with me? We look to the outward world in search of the answer.
Or we spend our days blaming our unhappiness on those around us. My boss yelled at me and ruined my day. I’d be so much happier if I quit. The kids are driving me crazy. I can’t wait for them to grow up. The neighbor’s lawn is overgrown. How can they live like that and do that to me and the neighborhood?
We focus our self worth and happiness on what others are saying about us, doing to us and spend our days comparing our dull lives to our hundreds of Facebook friends that seem to have it all together, living their lives filled with laughter and fun. What MAKES them happy?
How can any of us be happy living in the chaotic world in which we do? How is it possible to focus inward instead of outward when we are blasted all day with information through all of the different sources of media and information? “Quiet is something we have to demand of ourselves, rather than being our natural state,” Dani Shapiro so eloquently states. Is quiet the source of happiness or the vehicle to find it?
We need quiet to look deep within ourselves and to look inward for problem resolution. Here we can see that pain, unhappiness and discontent is attributed to some form of non-acceptance and/or resistance to what is actually happening. Accepting and honoring the present moment, what is actually happening and allowing it to be, can give us a taste of inner freedom from outward conditions, and quite possible lead us to a state of inner peace. The more we accept the present moment, for it is all we really have, the more we are free from pain, unhappiness and suffering. If we work with the present moment as if we had chosen it, our lives would forever change for the better and maybe we would find that treasure, that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow…..happiness and/or inner peace.
Let’s define for the purpose of this Power Tool
Looking inward: Solving problems, situations and dilemmas with the focus and intent on what YOU can do to manage the situation and find peace within that particular problem, situation or dilemma; changing your own behavior and/or viewpoint instead of focusing on changing that of others.
Looking outward: Solving problems, situations and dilemmas with the focus and intent on what OTHERS can do to make the situation more manageable for you and expecting OTHERS behavior to make you happy; trying to change other’s behavior and thoughts to something that is acceptable to you and to something that makes YOU feel better.
The outward work will never be puny if the inward work is great.