Sunday, August 23, 2009

Are you playing the score of a lifetime with what you have left?

In 1995, Violinist Izhak Perlman performed at the Lincoln Center in NYC. Perlman was stricken with polio as a child, so he has braces on both legs & walks with the aid of two crutches-very slowly.
The most remarkable thing happened that night. Just as Perlman completed the first few bars of his performance, one of the strings on his violin broke. The audience gasped & began silently lamenting mostly about the long wait they’d just endured watching Perlman hobble across the stage to perform. Now what would happen?
The unthinkable occurred…Perlman used the three strings he had left and played the most exquisite score, even going so far as to create new sounds never heard from a violin.
After the breathtaking performance, the audience went into a massive pandemonium of cheering, yelling and utter astonishment over being able to witness firsthand, the unthinkable being done.
Perlman smiled and while wiping the sweat from his brow humbly stated “You know, sometimes it is the artist’s task to find out how much music you can still make with what you have left.”
This is the task facing each of us today & for the rest of our lives. In the midst of uncertainty, we literally are forced to RE-THINK every aspect of our lives. Nothing is sacred. Nothing can be overlooked, ignored or forgotten as far too much is at stake for doing so.
Now is the time to clearly identify what you have & use it to acquire the life you envision for yourself. You & I must use what we do well as the bargaining tool to craft the masterpiece entitled life!
But how, when so many unimaginable things have happened?
It begins with changing your perspective. Perspective is very powerful because it dictates your emotions. If you look at the world from a selfish &/or defeated perspective, you will see the world through the lenses of “Look what ______ is doing to me! “You can’t trust anyone. They’re all out to get me.”
So let’s work together & defend the beachhead of your inherent strengths by learning to convert your challenges into growth opportunities.
Answer the following questions:

1) What are two things that you do well? What two things do people admire you for & wish they could implement in their lives?

2) What two things do you stress most about?

3) When & how do you get relief? Really think about this step. By noticing the exceptions-those places where you get PEACE, you can make those exceptions more accessible to the parts of your life that are most challenging.
4) Now list those exceptions (the way you get to the solutions & take the 1st week and practice implementing what works for you. Take the 2nd week to work out the kinks. Take the 3rd week to celebrate your new established HABIT.) Exception examples are “I notice I don’t get as upset when I focus on _____or do_____.” “I see that I’m not stressed when I respond to _______ this way? “I notice I’m better after _____.”

5) Promise yourself, in advance, to consistently check in to determine “whether you’re supporting myself as best you can?” “Is there something else that you need & how you might go about getting it.” “Where will you begin?”

The bottom-line…

Life inevitably throws each of us a series of setbacks. The difference maker is how we CHOOSE to respond over & over & over and over AGAIN. As you choose to respond differently, you’ll teach yourself to convert challenges into growth opportunities. This mindset and behavior will allow you to remain confident, courageous and phenomenal!
Now you’re another step closer to fulfilling your hearts desires!

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