Welcome to the mind agility training. As you may know, dog agility is a fun sport for intelligent dogs and their owners. The goal is for the dog to cross an obstacle course as quickly as possible with maximum accuracy. From dog agility to mind agility is not too big a leap. I personally believe there is no difference between getting your dog to cooperate or your mind. Although it is called dog agility, it is the handler who has to learn how to lead so the dog will follow. In mind agility, it is the handler, you, who is trained to become a leader. A really, really good dog handler is called a dog whisperer. This agility training will help you take the first steps toward becoming a mind whisperer.
In an agility race a dog runs without a leash. It’s the handler’s job to direct the dog through the obstacles. She is not allowed to touch the dog or the obstacles, nor is she allowed to lure the dog with toys or food. She can only use her voice, body signals and the way she moves over the field to give her dog directions. In order for the dog to reach the finish, both willl have to learn to cooperate smoothly. A calm and assertive handler not only knows how to handle her dog effectively, she has a vision. The handler’s vision is simple: to be the best team, to be champions. In order to win, she assesses the course, determines how to cross it effectively and decides on the handling strategies. In the race she trusts her vision, her dog and their training to finish as smoothly as possible.
Today, we’re going to start our training. When you start something new, you usually miss more than half of what is going on. And that’s okay. Once you get to know the game better, once you get better at playing the game, you’ll start seeing nuances and understand underlying patterns that first escaped you. At the start of this training, I want you to see the big picture, finesse will come later.
Question: If the training field were to represent your life, what course are you going to run? How do you see yourself finish? Can you see yourself running a course that no one else has run before, a very personal, unique course? Can you see yourself as an outstanding handler? How DO you see yourself? Suppose you could find nothing wrong with who you are, that you were perfect in every way? How would you think, speak and act? How would you treat yourself, your partner, your kids and all you meet? How would that feel? Just close your eyes for a moment and imagine what that would be like.
What if I tell you that you are all that, that you are just as perfect now as on the day you were born. It is true that along the way you have picked up beliefs and behaviors that are keeping you from being who you are on the inside, but those can be let go off. You are a unique human being. In the whole wide world there is no one like you. You are one of a kind. You are endowed with a unique set of experiences, talents and skills. This makes you special. Having a vision means seeing and respecting your uniqueness, the perfection of who you are and letting go of what others have believed and to this day believe you to be. Having a vision means choosing the life that is growing on the inside, the life you feel inspired to live.
I have struggled with this a lot. It’s is a different way of thinking. It’s relearning to think with the whole of your being. You don’t have to create a vision, your vision of all that you are is already locked up inside of you. All you have to do is uncover it, make it visible. Don’t worry if you can’t see ‘the perfection of you’, I certainly didn’t when I started my training. Just relax. Like me, you will be allright. What I have learned is that when you are somewhat confused, when your vision is cluttered or blurry, if you keep focusing and make decisions based on what you do see, it will become clearer, bit by bit. If your vision feels like some indecipherable quantum soup to you right now, don’t focus too hard on it. Instead focus on whatever makes you feel best about yourself, however small, and just stumble ahead. When you make decisions based on that part of you, you will get a clearer feel of how you will want to run your course in time.
Uncovering your vision is exciting and scary at the same time. Having a vision means knowing why you do what you do and how you do it. Living your vision means making choices that are aligned with your personal vision of who you are, and in doing so you automatically let go of options that are not aligned with living your best life, of the life others have envisioned and lovingly are evisioning for you. Uncovering your vision and letting go go hand in hand. By moving forward in the direction that your heart recognizes as your best future, you move away from what is holding you back from living it. It is a step by step process. Doing the mind agility course will help you get more clear.
In part 4 of this series, we’re going to conquer obstacle #1, the sway bridge. Your heart’s vision is always ahead of your rational mind. Bridging is helping your mind cross that gap and join your vision of all that you can be. We’re going to continue the mind-dog metaphore. I think you’ll agree it is easier to imagine a dog walking on a sway bridge than you would your mind.
photo by Lloyd Bristow