Show Up Each Moment

Why then, I ask myself – and you… why would we choose anything other than the present moment in this grand New Year? A timely reblog from New Year’s 2012.

erikshope

Are you looking back over 2013 this new year of 2014?

A timely reblog – This New Year, I vow to show up each moment.

Show Up Each Momentby Andrea Chilcote

On this summer holiday weekend, half-way through 2013, it seems fitting to reflect back on my resolve to “not look back.” Hmmm… is that an oxymoron?

I’m not looking back over 2012 this new year of 2013. In fact, I don’t intend to look back again. This new year, I vow to show up each moment.

On the weekend I was talking with teacher and life coach Lauri Cloud. Once again, she nearly knocked me over with a blinding insight. “You know what trips you up Andrea?” she offered. “You keep looking back.” She went on to say that the popular advice that seems to be showing up everywhere today, telling us to release everything from past regrets to deep-seated, age-old…

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That Ego Feeling

by Andrea Chilcote

The following post appeared originally on The Spirited Woman where Andrea is a weekly blogger. This summer, followers of this blog will enjoy bi-weekly archived posts that have appeared on The Spirited Woman but never before on this site. 

Earlier this week I was talking with a client about balancing the seemingly contradictory demands that create a significant amount of angst in a corporate leader’s life. In day-to-day practice, it’s really tough to make decisions for the good of the company when sometimes those decisions are not good for the business unit. It’s a challenge for executives to be involved and connected at all levels without usurping lower level managers’ autonomy. And, anyone who works in a for-profit business knows that at every turn, the delicate balance of delighting customers and maintaining profitability must be maintained.

We talked about how human ego plays into these decisions, and very quickly the conversation became philosophical. “What do you think ego is?” he asked me. “Is it ever a good thing?”

He cited Eckhart Tolle’s classic work The Power of Now, and we both agreed that Tolle might say there’s nothing good about ego. I told my client I saw ego as a separation from who we really are, and that “who we are” is not a unit but a part of a whole. In that way, no individual is ever separate from his or her corporate peer or competitors – we just think we are, and that’s the problem.

There’s more though. As humans living on the earth, we are each a “self,” connected to all things visible and invisible, but still separate. If this human experience is the ego, the only way to rid ourselves of it completely is to no longer be here in form and that’s certainly not the answer for me or my client.  But here’s the gem. The very moment we observe, rather than identify with, our egocentric “I-me-mine” thoughts and feelings, they dissipate. And our unique and grand selves can go about the work we signed up to do, making decisions that are sometimes imperfect but come from our best and highest self. From our hearts perhaps, not from our egos.

After that call, I came upon a post by a friend. He titled it “Hearts eye.”

Heart’s Eye
“Ego looks at things and people with the eyes in our head. Intuition looks them with the eye in our heart. Have your ego’s eyes gifted you with opportunities (most call problems) that caused you angst? Mine sure have. The eyes in our head see much less than what we give them credit for seeing. Spend time getting to know your heart’s eye, the source of intuition and inner knowledge – for it comes from your soul or Higher Self. Its guidance always is for your highest and best good for all concerned.” – Jackson Hanks 

For some time I’ve been writing that we must learn to lead with our hearts, and make decisions from a place of balance. Our heart provides the guidance we need when either choice seems flawed or contradictory.

The next time you get that ego feeling (you know, superiority, judgment or even the ugly ones like righteousness and victimhood) – stop, and as Tolle would advise, become aware. Look with your heart, and feel the shift. I’ll be practicing along with you.

“You got to look at things with the eye in your heart, not with the two eyes in your head.” –Lame Deer, Medicine Man of the Oglala people

Show Up Each Moment

Are you looking back over 2013 this new year of 2014?

A timely reblog – This New Year, I vow to show up each moment.

Show Up Each Momentby Andrea Chilcote

On this summer holiday weekend, half-way through 2013, it seems fitting to reflect back on my resolve to “not look back.” Hmmm… is that an oxymoron?

I’m not looking back over 2012 this new year of 2013. In fact, I don’t intend to look back again. This new year, I vow to show up each moment.

On the weekend I was talking with teacher and life coach Lauri Cloud. Once again, she nearly knocked me over with a blinding insight. “You know what trips you up Andrea?” she offered. “You keep looking back.” She went on to say that the popular advice that seems to be showing up everywhere today, telling us to release everything from past regrets to deep-seated, age-old feelings, is the very thought pattern that is keeping us (and me) from rising above them.

That made a lot of sense to me. I have worked to stay present in the moment at hand for at least as long as I can remember. And like so many lessons, I keep learning it.

Well, I have a new practice. I resolve to not compare my present circumstances to past situations. I will embrace each experience as if it is new. Now that doesn’t mean I won’t utilize the precious experience gained. It simply requires me to release the fear that inevitably accompanies the comparison.

Almost at the very moment I gained this insight, life presented an opportunity to practice my resolve, as life on earth does so often.

In the post-holiday days when many are easing themselves into the routine of their lives, I’ve been very busy with a combination of work and personal commitments. It’s the kind of time I’ve come to describe as “no room for error” – everything is planned and will work out fine providing nothing interrupts the schedule.

Dear reader, you know my next line. The plan was interrupted, by circumstances that surpassed its urgency.

So what did I do? I did what I know to be the only choice for me: prioritize the heart over the head. What I did not do was flawlessly execute my goal of being present and not looking back. As a result, I experienced ample stress. But here is the gem, the gold. Not one fear that was rooted in the past or future mattered in the end. The only times I was productive, at peace and of service to others were those moments in which I was present.

Why then, I ask myself – and you… why would we choose anything other than the present moment in this grand New Year?

This voice in your head takes you away completely from what is happening now. You’re out in some future moment where things might go wrong or you are trapped in the past where you are continuously replaying an old movie in your mind about the time you failed a school examination or someone said something unkind. You’re stuck, but you can’t see it. The movie feels like an absolute reality, and it keeps you from truly acknowledging or appreciating life as it is now. But it’s not reality. You can’t see the present. You’re too busy with where you want to be next (or where you were), which causes continual stress. The only solution is awareness, awareness that the voice in your head is really just repeating thoughts—no more, no less. Eckhart Tolle

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This post appeared originally on The Spirited Woman where Andrea is a weekly blogger.