"In daily life we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy." Brother David Steindl-Rast

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Thinking in the Gray

Today I am grateful for a nice run in the cool morning air and for the vibrant colors of summer-like green leaves against a blue sky. I am also grateful for my mind, with all the positives and pitfalls within.

I consider myself a thinker in the gray areas. I can be black or white in my thinking about a few things, but I am mostly a believer in the idea that my perceptions and experiences shape my thoughts. Since perceptions change and new experiences happen, gray fits. It is not all or nothing.

The trouble is, our society seems to have succumbed to a cultural version of all or nothing thinking. You are either right or wrong, positive or negative, all for or totally against an issue. Really? We don't help ourselves out with this kind of thinking, and we don't help each other out with it either. All or nothing thinking closes minds and creates intolerance.

Consider looking for common ground and keep more of an open mind and a willingness to learn new things. For me, common ground is what I am getting done, what is going well, what I can be thankful for at this moment.

Divisive ground is beating myself up for being human and flawed, for not doing enough in a day, and so on with such drivel. And when I beat myself up, I tend to also take it out on those around me.

All or nothing. Black or white. Limiting and lacking in love and tolerance.

Gray. Flexible. Unlimited potential for finding ways to connect with self and others.

2 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. The tough part is bringing ourselves and others back from the all or nothing to a more stable middle ground. Thanks Aileen.

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