In college, I had a friend who would walk around social settings and quietly stick a card in your hand.
The card said, “STOP TALKING.”
I still think it’s hilarious!
Nowadays, this friend has turned into a highly successful CEO and has expanded his repertoire of cards.
His latest card says, “DUDE, YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG.”
It’s half funny and totally true.
Your complicated life is about to get a whole lot easier. Let me explain.
Earlier this year I took a training in Transcendental Meditation. It’s like $800 and there are a series of four classes.
After the first class, the teacher said, “Ok that’s it for today. I’ll see you tomorrow.”
And I responded, “I thought we were going to do more. Is that really it?”
And the teacher proceed to explain, “Look, when you get on a plane, you don’t need to know how the plane works. You sit in your seat, watch a movie and the plane gets you there.
“When you send an email, you don’t need to know how your computer breaks down the data and sends it across the internet. You just press send.
“You don’t need to understand how this technique of meditation works. It just works.”
I always have this need to understand everything. I think a lot of us do.
Why did that tragedy happen?
Why is business good in one way and not in another?
Why did this person have to get that disease when they did nothing to deserve it?
Why? Why? Why?
Where is this curiosity getting me?
Yesterday I spoke with an 81 year-old elder from Mexico named Antonia.
Antonia’s daughter introduced her mom as having a special magnetism, someone who truly never gets mad.
I know a lot of people who really love their parents but it’s rare to met someone who reveres their parents.
And this lady has a special kind of love and respect for her mom.
Antonia and I spoke for a while, and the daughter translated.
This family has passed along a kind of pure love from one generation to the next.
Maybe it’s the Mexican culture, which tends to be more family oriented, but it was something unusual.
They explained they never came from great means, but they always felt great love.
Antonia would come home from school as a child and her mom would drop everything and look her in the eyes to see how she was.
Antonia passed that love on to her daughter, who was brought to tears several times in the conversation, remembering how her mom just showed up for her, each and every day.
“When you walk in the room, she acknowledges you.”
It sounds so obvious. But there are times when I’m watching something on TV, and I will completely ignore a loved one who walks in the room.
Nobody pays much attention to that. No big deal.
But over the course of days and weeks and years, our love decays and we lean too heavily on the intellect, stimulated by everything we read and watch, spending as much time with Guy Fieri or Oprah Winfrey or Anderson Cooper than we do with our own parents or children.
We get smarter and more connected but with that, we get more worried, more isolated, more angry.
DUDE, YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG.
If there’s a loved one in the room, acknowledge them. Look them in the eyes. Give them something..a HUG!
This Mexican family has shined the brightest light from one generation to the next. They revere each other.
Maybe your family is the same way.
But if you could stand to shine a brighter light in your life and in your relationships…
Here’s a thought. Release your need to understand why.
Stephen Hawking has often doubted that intelligence evolves much past our current level on this planet. As we are starting to see, intelligence is destructive.
I am learning from the elders who are happiest and healthiest that the real intelligence is not figuring out how the world works, but figuring how to free yourself from its seductions.
For those special ones who look at you when you enter a room, who hold their heart open through the good days and the bad, whose main focus is not to accumulate stuff but to spread the Light…
DUDE. YOU’RE DOING IT RIGHT!