Make A Choice [Seer Crawl Finale]

The final installment. A few paragraphs at a time. It’s is how I have been reading books lately.  Maybe a page or two. To really read and not just consume. Recently, I decided to re-read my book in the same manner. So, your final thought to ponder today from The Seer.  I’ve bolded a few thoughts on this, Day 49. [all material from the book appears in italics]:

 

 

 

34.

Virgil: Trace the path that we’ve followed and name for me the six recognitions.

Me: The first three recognitions constitute the loop called Pattern. They are:

  • I don’t have a problem. I have a pattern.
  • My language matters. It is a pattern that defines my story.
  • I am telling myself a story. My story is a pattern that determines what I see.

You asked me to surface my patterns because pattern reveals story.

The next three recognitions constitute the loop called Story. They are:

  • I locate myself within a story. The emphasis is “I locate.”
  • I am the teller of my story. The most important location to recognize is as the storyteller of my story.
  • Because I am the storyteller, I can change my story.

Virgil: Good. You are ready to move forward now. The third loop is called Choice and it is mostly invisible until you understand and embrace the first 6 recognitions. To change your story, you must first recognize that you are in choice every single moment of every day.

Me: Is this the 7th recognition?

Virgil: Yes. Everything we’ve done so far was meant to help you see how you are always choosing. Your story is a choice. Do you recall a distinction I made recently about control: you may not be able to control your circumstance but you have infinite control over how you are within your circumstance?

Me: Yes.

Virgil: The “infinite control” you have within your circumstance is called Choice. Do you also remember in an earlier conversation that I wrote about how a complexity can never be changed with another complexity but that significant change is always realized through a series of small simplicities?

Me: Yes, I remember. You wrote that it’s the little steps, the things that look insignificant that cumulatively create great change.

Virgil: Exactly. The little steps are the small choices that you make – all those things that you think are insignificant – they are very powerful choices.

 ***

 

I realized in my slow read that I could have ended the book here. The final two recognitions are choices: point of view and focus. Where you stand. What you define.

Significant growth/change is always realized through a series of small choices. It’s a loop. The small choices we make define our patterns of perception and action. The small choices we make determine the story we tell with our lives.

 

Thanks again for crawling through The Seer with me!

 

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Locate Yourself [Seer Crawl day 31]

Your thought to ponder for today: a slow read through THE SEER. Day 31. [all material from the book appears in italics]:

 

He continued:

Virgil: Since we are discussing orienting to yourself within your life, I want to give you two more practices to add to your practice of “not knowing.” Most people are incapable of learning because they are too invested in judging themselves. (Note: judging others is the same thing as judging yourself. We’ll work with this more later but for now assume that judgment in any form impedes learning.) When you contacted me you were incapable of learning because you were so full of self-judgment. Just as patterns and problems are dance partners, so, too, are learning and judgment. The goal is to help you see opportunity wherever you look. To have the eyes to see opportunity you must first be capable of learning at every moment. To develop this capability, you need two additional practices:

  • Have experiences first and make meaning second. This is actually how your brain works. You have experiences, feel sensation, and then you make meaning of the experience. This process of meaning making is what I call story. Children have no problem with this practice. They live to try things and then they make sense of what they just experienced. Adults flip it over and therefore block themselves: they think they need to know before they act. Do you see why practicing “not knowing” is so vital? So, practice what every child knows: have the experience first (practice not knowing), ACT…and then make meaning from what you experience.
  • Judgment is nothing more than a signal that you’ve left your comfort zone. It is a siren that says, “You’ve come to an edge!” For adults, all learning happens at the edges – because we’ve learned that it is uncomfortable to “not know.” The first thing that we do when we are uncomfortable is to judge ourselves and/or others. In that moment you have a choice: you can invest in the judgment or you can suspend your judgment and learn. That is the second practice: practice suspending your judgments so you can learn. When you do this, you become more capable of seeing your choices. At that point of choice, it is less important what you do as long as you recognize that you are choosing an action; nothing is happening to you, you are choosing.

It marries with our last lesson about the story you tell. Do you see?

Me: Yes. If I know that I am choosing then I cannot tell myself the story that things are happening to me. And, when I know that things aren’t happening to me, I’m capable of learning.

Virgil: Exactly. Learning and seeing are conjoined twins. When you can learn, you can see; when you can see, you can learn. For the next week, in addition to working with your two new practices, I have an assignment for you.

Me: Uh-oh. Last time you gave me an assignment I thought you were trying to trick me. 😉

Virgil: I had to earn your trust before I could start the tricks. Now that you trust me you have to watch out… Just kidding. There are no tricks or traps from me. Stepping beyond the known world is full of challenges and traps – but they all come from within you. Rooting out your traps is a necessary part of discovering your patterns of thinking. Here’s your assignment: Now that you know that you are telling yourself a story, I want you to pay attention to the many ways in which you ‘locate’ yourself within the story that you tell. We are constantly locating ourselves in our stories: both physically and in the roles we play. Study how you locate yourself in your story and what that reveals to you.

 

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