Life is great teacher, gives valuable lessons through pains, pleasures, failures, mistakes and dilemmas. Any struggle or self torture signifies some sort of mistake or misalignment with the spiritual laws. If we don’t take the lesson then we repeat mistakes and miss on the beauty and the fullness of life.
In today’s world there are too many choices in every area of life, at every turn, in daily chores, job, business, learning skills, habits, and spiritual path / practices. The obsession of choosing best in every area often delays the best to descend in life.
Means of success
Let’s do a review of various choices we make; why we get confused and what can we do; and can we build some design pattern to follow to choose effectively and confidently, particularly in matters like career, starting a new venture, field of service, skill area , suitable spiritual path to practice, mental models etc. For simplification let’s refer this area of action as means – something that we choose to do to achieve and express our best selves.
Steal ideas from incredible people
I have experienced immense torture of choices and confusion in my life and lost huge amount of time, gradually learned and built some systems for quick decisions. Borrowed ideas from great masters to fix confusion patterns and avoiding frequent stuck modes. Have got immense support through reading texts of inspiring people and revolutionary Gurus. Particularly in dilemma context Swami Ramsukhdas Ji ( 1905 – 2005) and Swami Sharnanand Ji ( 1900 -1974) have disentangled my being to great extent by their invaluable books and lectures. They both were blessed with extraordinary depth of clarity – simple and clear articulation and like all real saints, a compassionate heart.
Don’t copy anyone blindly or become a follower of external identity but understand the beautiful ideas and depth of compassion all inspiring people have imbibed in them. Remain open to super easy solutions & timeless suggestions to try and test for becoming a super learner and share further with those who understand the need of it. Learning is achievement and sharing is love. Stealing ideas and integrating in life is actual respect to artists and mystics.
Choice criteria for unimportant / routine matters
Choices like clothing, color of car, online shopping, what to order at the restaurant, what to cook in breakfast/lunch/dinner, mobile phone etc., you know how we lose our time picking the best of mostly unnecessary ones. Reject or select quickly to save yourselves from distracting away from priorities.
Some tips –
- Everything is best. Take it as a rule. When you are choosing toys, potatoes, apples or oranges. Select range and not items, just trust every piece is same in that range. Save time and don’t bargain in anything under XX amount.
- Instant choices in “doesn’t matter” cases – From your past experiences identify some areas where your choice doesn’t matter at all. Like toys, crackers, children’s clothes, or what they wish to wear – let them decide. Category of buying something which is unwanted – on which we not only waste our money but time too . Imagine this – we don’t need to buy something and we find ourselves on an e-Commerce site, not able to decide from 3 best offers on watches / T-shirts, which popped up during reading some breaking news. Such breaking news with bombarded ads are breaking and dragging us more in unconscious behaviors.
- Avoid bargaining, exchanges – Just see that whole thing is unnecessary. Either drop or buy it, at least save time and mood. It’s like crackers, we are doing it for fun, right? And it doesn’t matter if we enjoy fireworks of X quantity or 20% less. Avoid exchanges, sometimes when we go for exchange we end up buying more stuff that we don’t need.
- Intentionally procrastinate as many as you can. Have tried this a lot, particularly with boring mail threads, which became obsolete after few days. Or later if it enters into necessary zone then we can focus easily and finish it fast. This sounds lazy but saves a lot of time. Test it for yourself.
- Build systems of minimal choice lifestyle – examples – I will decide to buy anything in less than 2 mins for value less than XX amount. Or will delegate to someone suitable. Will give myself at max 3 places to check to buy clothing and decide in less than 10 mins. What to wear – what I see at the top of stack or just keep 3-4 choices and refresh these every month or 2-month. Have read somewhere, Einstein used to have multiples of same design/color clothes to reduce his everyday choices.
Main idea is to save yourself from mundane deliberation & decision fatigue. And carve out more and more quality time for creating something you love and believe into – some deep work.
How to pick best means for important matters like spiritual evolution, career or passion
Best choice is relative and what is best to someone could be worse for another. We may value something because it is in trend or our friends, neighbors doing it but that’s a hollow choice. More appropriate would be to choose because it suits us best physically, mentally, morally and spiritually.
One of the important care in our life during receiving suggestions is not to do what others are doing but to understand what we must avoid to arrive at the best choice. What to do needs to be a very personal and specific choice. If one is able to hold back from what he must not do then he gets the clue of most suitable means he should choose to do. Criteria of what we must avoid while making a choice is detailed below.
The Criteria for filtering the most suitable choice in important matters
- Must not oppose our own wisdom – Whenever our conscience says it’s not right morally or spiritually, we must avoid opting it – anything of harm to self or anyone. If we do it forcefully then we fail eventually and repent later for doing it.
- Interest factor– Some areas, paths or means are okay from wisdom point of view but doesn’t interest us enough, we don’t feel the enthusiasm while engaged. We don’t have a natural liking doing these, we must avoid to choose. We can’t give 100% doing something halfheartedly, neither helps the doer nor the receiver. It remains a tick-in-the-box thing life long. Any task we give our 100% to becomes worship, a creative expression, a vehicle to transform our unconsciousness into enlightened awareness.
- Competency factor – We must avoid to choose where we are not competent enough. Let’s park it for now, it may be the case that you may develop in future but in present situation try and make intersection of all three factors – 1) green signal from wisdom, 2) interests and 3) your energies, capabilities and current situation.
Q. What if I find no means interesting or myself passionate of doing anything but still want to progress spiritually and evolve?
Deeply relax and rest at the center, our real home. Rest without laziness is superb means to succeed in itself. It develops the potential and in future you would find your passion or attain spiritual heights through deep rest automatically. Such a deep rest at the center is goal of all meditations and is the secret of creativity, peace, self-awareness and pure love.
Learn this art of effortlessness and amazingly, only prerequisite it needs – we must not do anything which is harmful to us or society nor become lazy. Restful awareness is one of the matchless gift from Existence, read Simplified crux of meditation to get more details to develop sub skills of deep rest.
Q. How does above criteria help effective filtering?
Green signal from our own wisdom helps in gaining clarity and determined moves. It ensures we do not work against laws of nature to eventually fail and get into hopeless zone.
Interesting factor makes our mind glue to chosen means which cuts of distractions and the tendency to obsessively cling to outcomes. Instead we enjoy the process deeply and become one with it, naturally best outcome follows when time is ripe. Deep satisfaction that we get through deep work reduces the dependency on indulgence in short-lived pleasures.
Competency factor ensures our unique place and enables us to conceive success and achieve it. It helps us to find our niche and surpass all competition and insecure feelings. Nature blessings are imbibed in the form of caliber and capacity imparted to us and we are designed to excel in chosen area of work and naturally strengthened to face challenges positively. Sustained period of passionate engagements, practices further solidifies the skill and builds our creative muscle.
With such ease and flow, clarity, determination, 100% participation and sustained momentum success becomes a norm.
Call to Action
- For all important practices and long term habits / goals pass your choices through criteria explained above to filter the most suitable choice for self. Nature’s design supports vision of building a team of real human beings who test impossibles and are free, fearless, productive and creative – working passionately and contributing compassionately. Intend to be part nature’s team of real human beings.
- For less important and routine matters save your deliberation time and avoid decision fatigue.
- Don’t torture yourself through overwhelm, confusion, overdoing too many good things. Pick the most suitable ones and deepen further those skills. Always remember this rule given by great masters – doing wrong is sin but not doing good (which is not suiting us) is not a sin.
- Keep editing your routines regularly – weekly / fortnightly / monthly to filter out non-working ones.
- Best choice compromises of 2 elements, incorporating which our work, service, worship, spiritual means and passion become synonyms for us.
- First element – What suits us most is the signal of what we are designed to do.
- Second element – How we can help through our passion and spiritual practice to the world.
In future posts I may detail on innumerable means, solutions, techniques, knacks but keep in mind to pick what suits you most as per your interest and abilities. But when mistake is shared pay special attention to see and drive out fully if it’s present in your life too.
Love and regards,