Three Keys to Thriving

Be Present. Open up. Do what matters

If the path before you is clear, you’re probably on someone else’s. Joseph Campbell

Philosophy is concerned with human existence and is associated with “schools of thought”. Western philosophy is rooted in the ancient Greek and Roman thinkers and Judeo-Christian beliefs. Eastern Philosophy is grounded in the Hinduism, Taoism, Buddhism, and Confucianism. Part of who we are is forged by where we are from. But the core of our self-image is flexible. We can change who we are. First we must reinvigorate ourselves. Vigor comes from eating well, exercise and getting enough sleep. In order to thrive, you must get control of your health to the best of your abilities. Thriving goes far beyond endurance. Now is the time to not just survive but to flourish. Three basic keys of thriving are: Be Present; Open up; Do what matters

Being Present

The word mindfulness can summon up: visions of yoga, meditation, pastel colors, soft lighting, trendy workshops. But the underlying concept of mindfulness concerns being in the present. This doesn’t mean abandon your memories or ambitions. See the beauty in your life. We all have experienced moments when we are busy being busy. All those around us are buzzing like bees with busyness. All this expenditure of energy can produce great anxiety and stress, which are toxic to health and well-being. Living in the here/now grounds you and connects you to your real life. Sometimes that can be difficult because so much of society is geared towards the past or the future (advertising, upcoming meetings, social media…). To be more in the present devote less time to considering the past and future. Savor the moments. To get yourself back into the Here/Now focus on your breathing. Take an awe-walk Learn to hit Pause and Refresh once in a while.

Opening up

It can be difficult to trust others. Trust is earned, but at the same time, we have to be open to believing in others. Hope is the catalyst for trust. I had a friend I worked with in China who told me I trust too much in the good intentions of others. That trust was not easy to cultivate after the world-shattering revelations of my first marriage. But being a father taught me that life is not about always protecting yourself. Cultivate being less self-conscious. Yes, it is true one has to stay safe, but everyone should know how to open up to others. Too much joy is loss when people try to protect their inner world from emotional mistakes. Be honest. Honesty is a key to becoming self-aware. No one is perfect. It can be difficult to be open to others, but in any relationship, those who grow together stay together. Open up and let the sun shine in.

Doing what matters

To thrive requires getting proper perspective on your life. What matters to you? I don’t think money is the most important thing to you. You wouldn’t be reading this far if you were motivated by greed. Because greed is what motivates weighing everything on a scale of monetary gain/loss. I was very close to someone who measured everything in terms of how much? How much can I give and get more in return. She died years ago, and none of that money did any good, in fact the constant measurement of time versus expenditure hasten the end. The phrase, you can’t take it with you, kept ringing through my mind. Life changes are possible every minute. Start getting perspective on your life. What truly matters to you? Lesson One: Life is about CHANGE. Lesson Two: Choose what matters to your heart and not your bank balance. Lesson Three: Love yourself and those around you – unconditionally.

You can thrive and flourish. Get healthier. Get moving to release tension and stress. Take time and get away to gain some perspective. See where you are going. Broaden your horizons. Take an inventory of the “things” in your life and de-clutter. Clutter decreases creativity and increases stress and anxiety. Get out into nature and be nurtured by the present moment ever-unfolding all around you. Have some fun. Get some quiet time when nothing is going on, just being. If you are going through changes in your life, take time alone. Solitude opens the mind to increased possibilities. Trust yourself. “As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live.” – Goethe

Published by cewheeler

Writer/Artist:12 years in China – univ. lecturer: writing,poetry,culture; editor – magazine/newspaper & actor. 40 years students of the Tao. Traveler. Father. Read my books at:

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