Just started listening to the podcast “Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations“, 1-on-1 conversations with the aim “to awaken viewers to their best selves and discover a deeper connection to the world around them“.
The very first episode that I listened to deeply impressed me, featuring Oprah interviewing Iyanla Vanzant. Below I share 3 delicious bites of muesli for the mind & soul:
[How to Deal with Pain] Until the Moment You Heal Your Wound, You will Continue to Bleed
Iyanla: “You (Oprah) as a 60-year-old woman is trying to forgive your mother (for her wrongdoings). But that’s not who she hurt. She hurt the 6-year old. And you are using the language and the construct of a 60-year-old to try to forgive her, when it’s the 6-year old who needs to say: ‘You hurt me. I’m mad at you. You were mean to me! I’m not your friend.’“
Iyanla: “When we try to forgive from where we are now, and don’t take into consideration where the wound happened, that’s when a wound keeps bleeding. So while you have forgave her in your quiet time, go back to that 6-year old and speak to her in 6-year old language.“
This strikes a chord with Louis Hay’s philosophy that we all have an inner child within us:
It doesn’t matter how old you are, there is a little child within who needs love and acceptance…working with the inner child is most valuable in helping to heal the hurts of the past…No matter how painful our early childhood was, loving our inner child now will help us to heal it.Louis Hay, “Love Your Inner Child“
[How to Hack Life Like a Pro] Life Falls Apart Because it Needs to be Rebuilt
Iyanla: “Because sometimes we build on a shaky foundation…if this is falling down, this gotta be Rebuilt. Better.“
I love this no-BS, punchy line on how to handle it when things seem to “fall apart”. The answer is a one-word approach “rebuild”, with a two-word goal “be better”.
What do you do when the Lego blocks come tumbling down? You rebuild. What do you do when the sand castle got smashed? Rebuild. What do you do when you want life to head in another direction? Rebuild. It’s as simple as that.
Some of you may object that this is too simplistic. You seek a more sophisticated “recipe” on how-to-hack-your-life-into-awesomeness. Sometimes we fall into the trap of over-thinking on getting to the “best” solution, but nothing is more valuable than taking action in the moment. To rebuild. To be better.
Einstein said there are 5 levels of intelligence, from lower to higher levels in the sequence of: smart, intelligent, brilliant, genius and SIMPLE. Yes, you read it right – Einstein tells us simplicity trumps genius. Simplicity trumps everything. Everything.
Note: I highly recommend reading Peter Kaufman’s take on The Multidisciplinary Approach to Thinking in its entirety – it’s without doubt the best article I’ve read so far this year. I have written a blog post here summarizing the key takeaways & my action plans on putting this into practice.
[What is the Essence of Life] Life = Energetic Invitation of Our Thought Process
Iyanla: “Thought is energy and thought is creative. And we continuously impregnate the environment with mental constructs, every time we think…we can’t afford to have a negative thought. So you are creating. And everything that’s there in your life is by energetic invitation of your thought process. You invited it in.“
Peter McWilliams wrote a book with a revealing title: “You Can’t Afford the Luxury of a Negative Thought“.
You Can’t Afford the Luxury of a Negative Thought. Let that sink in for a second. The most expensive thing in the world, paradoxically, is “free” to get and “free” to get rid of .
In the best-selling self-help book “The Secret“, Rhonda Byrne wrote:
If you can think about what you want in your mind, and make that your dominant thought, you will bring it into your life…The only reason why people do not have what they want is because they are thinking more about what they don’t want than what they do want.Rhonda Byrne, The Secret
Rhoda Byrne calls that the Law of Attraction, i.e., we attract what we think about. She believes “thoughts become things,” and thus the best way to get what you want is to “see the things that you want as already yours“.
Note: Another way to think about the Law of Attraction is via the lens of imitation, i.e., our lives & the physical reality will imitate our thoughts. I wrote about Life is the Ultimate Imitation Game, looking at how imitation happens in biology, philosophy, politics, economics & engineering. This piece was heavily inspired by philosopher Rene Girard’s mimetic theory (Girard was a highly recommended philosopher by Peter Thiel).
How did you enjoy the mind muesli? Hungry for more?
Did your mind enjoy the 3 bites above? Does it feel nourished, inspired, satisfied? Hungry for more “mind food”?
I’ve written a post on Fantastic Lives & Where to Find Them, with life hacks from a comedian. In addition, I’ve been inspired by the following texts:
- Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine (Gail Honeyman) – hands-down one of my favorite novels of all time. It tells the story of a 29-year old “social misfit”, and achieves the almost-impossible trio of being hilarious, thought-provoking and touching at the same time;
- Daring Greatly (Brene Brown) – non-fiction on the strength hidden in vulnerability. The author Brene Brown also has a hit TED talk on why vulnerability is more powerful than we think;
- Hold Me Tight (Sue Johnson) – non-fiction on the science & case studies of Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy. Although the research itself is focused on improving relationships between couples, the tips are widely applicable to all types of communication in general.
What are some delicious ‘mind food’ you’ve enjoyed? Please share with me at firstname.lastname@example.org or on LinkedIn.
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