Inward to Outward – Shifting Perspective

Winston Churchill in Downing Street giving his...

Winston Churchill in Downing Street giving his famous ‘V’ sign. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As many of you might know, I finally created an official Facebook page for The Wellness Quest. I just wasn’t sure where all this was going when I began. Sure, I wanted an outlet for self-expression. Yeah, I was looking to connect with others who might be going through similar challenges. But I honestly never imagined that The Wellness Quest would become something read by people I’ve never met from places like Germany, Malaysia, and China. Of course, I figured my family and close friends would probably use my blog to keep tabs on me, in a manner of speaking. But again, I never really anticipated the power of the response I have received.

I know that this blog and the community it has helped to create has greatly influenced my recovery. I feel like it may have been one of the single most important pieces of the jigsaw puzzle, and that if not for a chance conversation between my uncle and I at the breakfast table, it might not have ever materialized.

Then again, I don’t really believe in chance any longer. I know that the conversation between Richard and I that was the initial genesis for The Wellness Quest was no accident. No mistake. In fact, the further I go along this path, the more I truly believe there are no accidents.

Sure, there are events that can be interpreted as “bad”, and “wrong”. And tragedy exists. It truly does. The question is how we interpret that tragedy.

Winston Churchill had some things to say on that subject. Most of it was in the typical British vein of “stiff upper lip, old boy”. But sometimes he’d throw out a gem like this:

“It is a mistake to try to look too far ahead. The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time.”

And:

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”

The reality was that during his time serving the British people, they were facing a tragedy of a magnitude so great it was difficult to understand. But despite his hard-charging, cigar-smoking, scotch-drinking, bad-naturedness, he did something that seemed impossible:

He was able to shift the mindset, the paradigm, of an entire country. He was able to help them see that the bombings, the pending invasion, the constant loss of life and property, that these things were in fact opportunities to show the world the strength of the British people.

And that is something few leaders in this millennia have achieved. Mandela tried. He spent half his life in prison. Ghandi succeeded, at least in part. Going back even further, Buddha was somewhat more successful, but even he only was able to influence certain groups of people. And sadly, Jesus Christ was killed for attempting to wake up the Hebrew people.

If you don’t like me religious references, deal with it. The truth is that all of the aforementioned leaders tried their best to energize a population, to create a shift in their perspective. And in his isolated position of crisis, Churchill was perhaps one of the more successful. (Again, if you don’t like my analysis, feel free to argue. If you know me, you know I enjoy a spirited debate)

So that brings me back to The Wellness Quest.

My original goal was about 80% self-focused, with about 20% of my attention devoted to the possibility of helping others.

But the natural progression has shifted my focus, and I would say at this point I spend about 70% of my energy (within The Wellness Quest) trying to help others understand my struggle so that they can utilize that information in their own respective journeys, whereas only around 30% of my attention is placed on personal therapy.

I wouldn’t say that The Wellness Quest has become irrelevant for me. I would say it has become increasingly relevant. As I have said before, in AA they say repeatedly that you “cannot keep what you have without giving it away”.

My desire to use the last five years of hell I have been through to help others and to use the unique knowledge and experience afforded to me by my disease continues to increase.

It appears I may have a few opportunities coming soon to do just that.

Remember what I said a couple days ago about Karma? I entered the intention into the universe months ago to use my experience to help others. And now the universe is responding in kind.

I am living in gratitude today.

Peace to you and yours,

-Nathan

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