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Pair #57 Anyone round here seen my answers?
As I look around for guests for the radio show, I’m often thinking about what problems you, my friends and listeners are dealing with.  I like to think the shows might actually point to ways to solve the big problems any of us are facing right now.

Maybe that seems to suggest that someone will come along who has THE answer just for you...

and that would make me so happy!

I certainly do want you to find what you are looking for; and yet the bare truth seems to be that no one else has your answer. 

There really is no direct link between someone else’s wisdom or teachings and your problem.  Or let me put it this way, the real link between your problem and the answer is not someone else’s answer.  It’s you.  It's the way you rethink the issue yourself, based on whatever information comes your way.

That's how I think it works. 

I mean have you ever noticed that we often reject even very good ideas simply because haven’t come up with ourselves?  Even if we specifically asked for them?

How many times have you suggested something to a friend and then they happily ignored your great advice, only to have them chirp later that they had this ‘great idea’ (which sounded a lot like the one you gave them and they didn’t want!).

We really only want to hear our own answers and yet we are constantly looking for other people to answer our questions.  (Did we learn this in school or what?)

But let's face it, between the good ideas of others, and our day to day issues, all we can get is a good push in the right direction.  And most of the time we resent that too.  Maybe we were just made this way.  Maybe that's why we need to confront some of our problems over and over again, until we are ready to listen to our own advice.  Until we are ready to take what we've gathered, make it our own and just trust what we are hearing inside.

That means the best advice you'll ever get might be someone who says nothing, but offers space for you to hear yourself. 

© 2010 Elese Coit
If you wish to reprint, feel free, please link back here and if it's of use, include:
"Elese Coit is a leader in transformative personal change and Hosts the Radio Show A New Way To Handle Absolutely Everything. To see the world differently, reach for one of her '101 New Pairs of Glasses' on http://elesecoit.com"
 
 
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Pair #33  I'm unhappy, you're unhappy, sign here...
As someone who spent quite a bit of time supporting causes of all kinds, I can say I paid my dues to the "We're Pissed And We Are Not Going To Take It Any More!" Club.  If there had been an award points program for righteous indignation, I'd be a Life-Long Platinum Club card holder.

So this last week when the theme for the radio show was "Hot Pursuit of Happiness", it really hit me... I always assumed I needed to be unhappy about something in order to change it.  In fact, the more angry I was, the better an activist I felt.

I was wrong. 

It has not escaped me that we have not essentially changed much in any of the causes I campaigned for using my fists. That doesn't mean things haven't changed at all.  Women have more rights. In some places Gay people have more rights. In some places you can live without 'being disappeared' one day. And it doesn't mean that a picture of a starving child plastered on the news won't mobilize the sympathies and pocket books of millions of people for the right cause.

But we can do all of that, anytime we like without the anger.  We can change anything we want without being sad, depressed or upset about it.  We can do it because we want to. That’s enough.

As my friend Jacob Glass was talking about in his lecture this week: to teach happiness, we need to be happy teachers.  I think to teach peace we need to be peaceful people.  Jacob is right when he says that somewhere in the midst of devastation somewhere in the world, people are most probably not wishing and hoping that "that angry, depressed guy comes back to help us out.’"

Now I know that I can be part of the solution to any problem, anytime if I want to and decide to.

I think we can change the world. One mind at a time. Starting with our own.

© 2010 Elese Coit
If you wish to reprint, feel free, please link back here and if it's of use, include:
"Elese Coit is a leader in transformative personal change and Hosts the Radio Show A New Way To Handle Absolutely Everything. To see the world differently, reach for one of her '101 New Pairs of Glasses' each day on http://elesecoit.com"

Thank you.
 
 
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Pair #26 What's in Your Wallet?
With Michael Neill joining me on the show on Friday, May 7th and Money as our topic, I've been thinking ... how's my relationship with money these days?

Many of us have a bi-polar relationship with money. When we have it we worry we will lose it. When we don't have it, we worry we never will. And somehow, no matter how much we have, it never seems to be enough.

Quickly take your money temperature:  How much of your time is spent thinking about money?  How much of your energy will be spent today worrying about money?  How many days or months has that been the case?

A few years ago I'd have run a high fever on those questions.   I tortured myself with money worries and then (and with some good help from Michael actually) I got better at seeing the difference between my situation and my thoughts about it. I saw that my mind was tied up in worry and I was living in a disaster film of my own creation. Once I stopped doing that, I freed up my creative mind. 

I can't tell you how to be a millionaire, but I can tell you this:  I never solved any problem by applying worry to it.  I solve problems by relaxing and not taking my own thinking so seriously and then acting on good ideas. 

It is possible to use your vivid imagination to formulate your next step rather than just allowing it to create disaster scenarios in a daily loop. This took me a bit of practice to do, but you'll get the hang of it. It means you can have an easy relationship with money. And everything else.

For more on what you can do try my Tips and Ideas pages  on stress and thoughts and ... I hope you'll join us for the show

And I'd love it if you'd share what you do to relax about money and get creative.
© 2010 Elese Coit
If you wish to reprint, feel free, please link back here and if it's of use, include:
"Elese Coit is a leader in transformative personal change and Hosts the Radio Show A New Way To Handle Absolutely Everything. To see the world differently, reach for one of her '101 New Pairs of Glasses' each day on http://elesecoit.com"

Thank you.
 
 
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Pair #17 Just Dying To Shop
Being in NY for Supercoach Academy every month is giving me lots of opportunities to eat out, walk, people watch and shop.

And shop.

Shopping is an old pasttime of mine.  No, let's be completely honest - shopping was a big addiction and a large part of my life.

Just like anything of this nature, alcohol, sex or any other 'pasttime' that hangs around, it's all about looking for things to feel better.  We think the things create the good feelings, so it's natural to go seeking stuff that 'makes us feel good'.

But no matter what the compulsion, many of us have started to notice that it doesn't actually work for the purpose intended.  At least not in the long term.  It just moves the pain around for a while.

If you consider the way we learn to think about the world (pleasure comes from having and getting things, safety comes from protecting ourselves against horrible things*)  It's very understandable.  And frankly, for some of us it will take reaching the very end of the rope of endless seeking, before we even start to consider that viable alternatives might exist.

I do think we have a longing for something in life, but I don't think that is the same thing as nagging insatiable desire.   It is a tragedy to confuse  the two.  Once you come to believe that happiness can only lie in satisficing desires, you are doomed to a life that is driven by acquiring and then the real tragedy emerges: it is not so much that we can't ultimately get what we seek,  but the looking back on life and realizing you've wasted it seeking something you didn't need.

I don't think a closet full of clothes would make up for that.  Somehow.
* The idea of Getting and Protecting Behaviors was, as far as I know, developed by Greg Baer.  You can hear him talk about Relationships and Truth Telling  on this show from March 20th, 2010.
© 2010 Elese Coit
If you wish to reprint, feel free, please link back here and if it's of use, include:
"Elese Coit is a leader in transformative personal change and Hosts the Radio Show A New Way To Handle Absolutely Everything. To see the world differently, reach for one of her '101 New Pairs of Glasses' each day on http://elesecoit.com"

Thank you.
 
 
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Pair #16, Go On, Go For Nothing!
Many spiritual paths make getting enlightened a goal.  The trouble with this idea is that, barring having a burning bush experience, it sounds like a very long and arduous path to getting somewhere you are not entirely convinced exists.  (OK, SOME of us are not entirely convinced). This week on the radio show with Peter Fenner we talked about the idea that you can be totally fulfilled without changing anything at all.  That sounds so far off reality for most of us that it’s easy to just pass it over completely.  But the more I thought about it, the deeper the implications. 

It made me consider the last few years of my life when most of my effort has gone into personal change and I could really identify with the thoughts I often had that went something like…

-   I need to create a ‘better me’

-   When I understand more, life will become easier

-   If I get better at this stuff, I won’t have any more problems

Sound familiar?

Those of us who are either ‘pursuing’ personal change or teaching it, what would happen if we actually called off the search?

One of the implications of ‘loving what is’ – which Peter talks about and which those of you who read and follow Byron Katie’s work is that the only time we suffer is when we are arguing with reality.  That the result of loving things as they are with no need to change them is, in fact, peace. “When you argue with reality, you lose,” as Katie would say, “but only 100% of the time.”

 The idea that there is nothing to become  underlies the effortlessness and accessibility of the Buddhist nondual teachings of Radiant Mind. 

Here are some of the main thing you can learn from Peter on the show and in his book “Radiant Mind”

-   the anti-frantic environment

-   how to stop making a problem out of having problems

-   why we get stuck when we think there is more to know than we know right now

-   why we don't have to make anything better

It is also my experience that painful thoughts and feelings dissolve when we are not struggling to establish what needs to change in order for us to feel better.

We pre-recorded the Friday the 23rd show, as I'm in New York, but I have to tell you, I had such a wonderful experience of sharing this 'state of awareness' on the show with Peter that I think just listening to it, there is a very good chance you will feel it too. And get a taste of what it is like when there no goal to get anywhere.

 
© 2010 Elese Coit
If you wish to reprint, feel free, please link back here and if it's of use, include:
"Elese Coit is a leader in transformative personal change and Hosts the Radio Show A New Way To Handle Absolutely Everything. To see the world differently, reach for one of her '101 New Pairs of Glasses' each day on http://elesecoit.com"

Thank you.