We are forever reminded that in order to achieve happinss, reward, or satisfaction that, unless we make a plan, set a goal, and envision the result, we will fail. Since I have been in practice I am rewarded when individuals share that large achievements fell on the heels of smaller adaptations to changes in the way they see success and/or failure. That by understanding and maximizing their unique ways of going about their pursuit of happinss, they are more likely to perceive ultimate joy, even in the face of tragedy. I will say that individuals who report satisfaction in working with me report a much greater knowledge and appreciation of their "process" in relationships, at home, and in their community. It could be said that self-knowledge gives birth to self-confidence, which in turn nurtures potential and optimism, all of which, it can be argued, are essential process ingredients.
In his "7 Habits of Highly Successful People", Stephen Covey said to "Begin with the end in mind" (Habit #2) wherein we are encouraged to envision life outcomes and achievement through application of core, personal values. It is through adherence to our principles that we most readily and effectively adapt to inevitable changes that are demanded through the course of our lifelong development. As we proceed through life, change is inevitable and we are wise to learn how to adapt.
As I think about setting life goals and purposes I stand by this concept. I would further enhance this principle by saying to "Begin and do with 'the process in mind'". When we aspire to higher achievements and accomplish objectives, we must be reminded that it's all about getting there and what is required of our minds, our bodies, and our inner sources to live and move toward our vision. In using my own experience in self-transformation my struggles with overcoming obesity were put to rest once I made peace with my process.
What exactly does that mean? In my case it was about losing weight and becoming fit and healthy. It meant developing the keenest awareness of physiological changes that drove cravings for unhealthy and unnecessary quantities of food which, in turn, activated ancient, hard-wired thoughts and belifs that threatened to sabotage my desire to achieve physical and emotional wellness. Through mindfulness and NOT will-power, I was able to make friends with my perceived hunger and to rejoice in the awareness that my body was adjusting to drastic new demands to adapt. I became aware that my hunger was more than a physiological phenomenon, it was a spiritual and emotional hunger that was steadfast in its attachment to food and eating rituals that had born such significant meaning in my life. And more, I became keenly appreciative of my ability to endure and to bounce back from adversity.
Part of my life "process", therefore, required that I pursue activities that would satisfy my emotional and spiritual hungers in a way that would be uplifting, nurturing, and sustaining. Through trial and error, I found activities, work, relationships, and practices that proved to be a good fit. Life achievements, renewed friendships, and solid amazement at what a human can endure, overshadowed my initial desire to "be skinny". The irony is that all of what I had desired to achieve through my attachment to food became manifest not through consumption of a thing, but through the process of self-examination, knowledge, and wonderment in the dynamic of release and resilience.
And so the process continues. Even into retirement and the start of Bencmark Counseling.
I invite your responses an personal insights to your own processes!