I read an interview in a recent issue of Evolve Magazine of bestselling author and artist SARK, and a couple of points caught my attention. She tells of a Magic Cottage that had already been rented according to the landlord by the time she called on it, but when she showed up the next morning it had not been rented, and she was able to rent the space. She just knew that the cottage was meant to be hers, and in ten years’ time she has gone on to purchase not only the cottage, but the garden and 3-unit building behind it.
While this is all pretty interesting (the way she tells it), it’s these words that strike me as genius:
“People are obsessed with how. How? How? How? It’s about be-ing; it’s not about how-ing… It’s really about envisioning… and then living it.”
How true! If we can just believe for long enough that it’s possible, then we can effectively remove the blocks we create in our minds by telling ourselves that “It’s not possible!” simply because we don’t see a way. And this is so easy to say and so difficult to do. We’ve trained ourselves that before we begin a project we must prepare ourselves, we must organize ourselves and devise a plan of precise knowledge that leads us from structured beginning to structured end. Now I’m not saying that we ought to throw this line of thinking right out the window, but what if we tweak it just a bit?
What if you prepare yourself for endless possibilities of an open mind? What if you organize yourself by removing the clutter in your mind that tells you that you cannot accomplish something because you don’t have a plan? And what if your plan is to be flexible and be open to opportunity and possibility? To be on the lookout for ways you couldn’t possibly think of yourself because you couldn’t possibly know it all? What if your structure is to be disciplined in your faith that what you’re passionate about will come to fruition because you believe in yourself and your calling just enough to allow it to happen? Could great things present themselves? I think you know the answer!
Now this all sounds well and good on paper, you say, but what about putting it into practice? “Be practical,” we tell ourselves. How do you break the habit of telling yourself, “No!”? How do you accomplish big things without a strict and precise plan? With this new plan of flexibility and just allowing things to happen? Of course it’s not that easy. But what if it is?
This brings me to SARK’s next brilliant revelation: Micro movements. She describes micro movements as action that is “five seconds to five minutes in length.” She goes on to walk us through a demonstration of an idea to clean out the closet. Your micro movement is to walk to the closet at 12pm on Saturday afternoon and open the closet door. That’s it. You may get a spark of motivation to spend the next 2 hours clearing all the clutter, or you may decide that it’s just too much and promptly close the closet door. And if that’s the case, then you “gently” choose the next micro movement, which might be to go to the closet door at 5pm on Monday and take five pairs of shoes out and look at them. This is very What About Bob?-like with baby steps. And here’s why she says it works:
“Micro movements cause a habit of completion in the mind and the mind doesn’t know whether this has been a big step or a small step. It just knows that you are doing something towards creative action. And it will just keep on multiplying and duplicating that effort until you do more habits of completing than you do habits of not completing.”
The great thing about this plan is that it hardly wastes any time at all. If you walk to the closet and are too overwhelmed then you have wasted just 10 seconds in walking to the closet and thinking about it. And if you spend the next two hours cleaning the closet, then you haven’t wasted two hours, but gained probably two square feet of closet space!
And what you’ve done is created a space from which inspiration, rather than desperation, moves your forward. Imagine if you started everything just like that. With a little step that is completed just like that. Go ahead and try it … what have you got to lose?
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