Thursday, December 29, 2016

Seeing Circles in a Square World

This world is full of different shapes. Squares, circles, triangles, octagons, parallelograms... all around us, all the time. Yet most people only see straight lines. People expect things to go strictly from point A to point B. Line segments of varying length yes, but always A to B... and straight.

We know other shapes exist. But we rarely notice them. How many times have you looked at a stop light and thought, 'rectangle'? Or stop sign and thought, 'octagon?'  Do you ever see the route you take as a shape? Or that your closet is a cube?

No, I'm not talking about math or geometry. I'm talking about life. Specifically, how people go from day to day, week to week, year to year never realizing that it's not a strict progression going from point A to point B, but living their life as if it were.

Living life deliberately is living a deliberate life. Let me explain...

Have you ever done something because that's how you've always done it? Have you done something because that's how your mom did it, or your dad, or your teacher?
Each morning you shower, get dressed, have breakfast, and go to work, right?
Why do you do it that way? Because you've always done it that way.
Doing it differently is just crazy talk, right?
What eat breakfast, go to work, go home, get undressed and shower?

Whoa...wait. What?

Sounds odd, doesn't it?
But that is exactly what you're doing. You're even doing it in the same order. You've now just thinking about it differently. Line segment to a circle. That is the key to a deliberate life. Thinking about what you're doing, why you're doing it, and if needed, changing what you're doing. Circling things all the way around from what to why. It's no longer a line segment point A to point B. It's now a circle. And circles change lives.

The other morning I went to the laundry area to get a sweater to wear to work. My husband is awesome and does a lot of the laundry. When I went to retrieve my sweater, I found it was unwearable. Not because it was dirty, but because it was put on a thin hanger. I chose a different top and waited until I was at home cooking dinner to mention this to the husband.

I explained that even though he doesn't wear many sweaters, the weight of a heavy fabric on a thin hanger, once dry, would leave pull points on the shoulders. Simple physics. I wasn't blaming him. Not at all. Like most people, he simply fell into the trap of not acting deliberately. He didn't think full circle.
If you think about what you're doing, while you're doing it, you do things differently. Had he thought about the weight of a wet sweater on a thin hanger he would have realized it would pull at the shoulders and once dry, leave pull points.

The end result was cause and effect. Point A to point B. However, if the process had been thought about full circle, taking those smaller line segments (thoughts) to form a full circle, my sweater might have been able to be worn that day. (Of course, there's always the possibility he thought about it and hung it up anyway, but that's not like him. He's much smarter, nicer and not that lazy.)

We do a million tasks every day. Most of them are done without thinking. But what if you started to think about what you do. Deliberately...thinking.
Living a deliberate life means deliberately living your life.

Thinking full circle in this world of squares and sharp corners takes a lot of practice. But you can do it. Start small. Change how you're thinking about something. Instead of thinking  'get up, shower, get dressed, eat breakfast and go to work'....think differently about it. Think 'eat breakfast, go to work, go home, get undressed and shower.'

You must first change how you think about something to see the different possibilities.
Start seeing circles in a square world.  A new world will open up to you.

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