A key life question is to determine where do I start with the process of obtaining excellent thinking skills. At thinkingfit we continuously emphasize this as utilizing your unique talents and becoming the best, happiest and most fulfilled person you can be is a valuable asset to you and society at large.
It is a sad fact that the majority of us lead less satisfactory lives because we resist and fail to engage in the pursuit of discovering, refining and utilizing our mental capacity optimally. Often this is simply due to a lack of knowledge, as we never get taught these skills formally. Very often, we also see it fit to prioritize other aspects of our lives, like our own entertainment, work or relationships. Although it seems to make sense these other aspects could prove to have less than satisfactory outcomes without laying the “self” foundation solidly first and maintaining it as an on-going process. It is similar to keep the maintenance of a ship or car intact.
To attain the ideal human existence mentioned in the previous paragraph, I have to focus on the most important task we as individuals have and that is to know ourselves; to look at ourselves objectively, to enhance what is positive and constructive as well as weeding out what is not. It is a life-long journey and gets more exciting as we move along this. It is like delving into Captain Hook’s treasure chest; it is like maintaining “emotional hygiene” as Daniel Goleman, the world expert on Emotional Intelligence, says. Yes, we are all endowed with potent potential but sadly, it more often than not is not unfolded to the full because of a general reluctance of human beings to engage in this process.
Increasing our awareness of how we think and assessing the quality of our thoughts, goes hand in hand with increasing self-knowledge and effective self-management. Sages and philosophers throughout the ages have relentlessly emphasized the crucial importance of self-knowledge. The Oracle of Delphi says “Know thyself,” Holy Scriptures constantly remind us to do self-investigation towards renewing and refining the mind. In more recent times Rudolf Steiner describes this process beautifully: He says:
“The waves of external life press in upon the inner man from all sides if, instead of mastering this external life, he is mastered by it. Such a man is like a planet which has to grow in a rocky cleft. Its growth is stunted until new space is created for it.
No external forces can create space for the inner man. Only the inner tranquillity he himself creates can do it.
Outer conditions can alter the course of his life; they can never awaken the spiritual man in him. It is the pupil – he alone – who must give birth to a new, higher man within himself.”
Steiner emphasises a number of key points in terms of human existence. We are pushed and pressed by the external world we live in. There are two choices we have. The first is to surrender and allow ourselves to be stunted and oppressed. The other choice is focus inward, develop ourselves and strive harder to become the most profound we can be.
I am of the opinion that each of us has a responsibility to explore ourselves and utilize our thinking not only to our own advantage, but also towards making a constructive and unique contribution towards society on the whole. To choose that I will radiate positivity instead of negativity. This is a potent tool to make a small difference to the greater world out there and I can only do this by tending to my thinking. Just think, if I show more appreciation and encouragement towards others; and myself everyone it might have a ripple effect and encourage my beneficiary to do the same for others. Something small can make a big difference.