Guest Post By Meredith Forder
Two weeks ago my husband drove me to hospital, checked me in, and lovingly kissed me goodbye, whispering, “Don’t worry, everything will be fine.”
I am normally a person who is well adjusted and at ease with the world around me, but as time drew near, for the operation, my heart began to shudder; the thought of having a part of my body removed was positively daunting.
I had to remind myself that many women had gone through this operation in the past and came out feeling much better than before.
As I changed into “the gown” I took a deep breath, calmed my nerves and surrendered to what was about to happen.
I decided to get out of my head and stop worrying. And start seeing things as they are, not as I would like them to be.
Witness The World
I chose to observe what was going on around me — the male nurse who rolled me down the corridor and into the lift, not once taking his eyes off where he was going; the people who sympathetically smiled at me as we went past; the nurse who told me how I would feel much better afterwards.
This ability to witness the world around me proved positively positive. By the time I was rolled into the operating theatre, all my apprehension had vanished.
The surgery was bright and buzzing with professionals. The surgeon greeted me with a smile and explained, once again, what he was about to do. Rather than feeling all tied up in knots, I felt at ease. The last thing I remember was Dr. Robinson saying, “Meredith, you’ll now feel a sight sensation in your arm…”
A minute later, actually three hours later, I woke up. It was all over.
The Most Important Lesson
The build up to the operation started a month ago when I complained of a back pain that soon became an acute throbbing ache. The doctor’s diagnosis was shocking, and when he told me that I needed surgery I began to honestly look at my daily habits.
Not that I was doing anything wrong, it was more about what I wasn’t doing. So I decided to write an article on The Value Of Health and vowed to dedicate this chapter of my life to personal growth and development.
So far the journey has been highly beneficial, full of valuable lessons, but by far the most significant lesson has been:
To GIVE without expectation of return.
This lesson revealed itself when I, ever so slightly (and that’s more than enough to agitate the mind), expected certain people to visit me in hospital and they didn’t! They didn’t even bother to phone!
“After all that I’ve done for them,” I thought.
You can imagine my initial disappointment. Fortunately, I managed to turn things around by focusing on correcting my own thoughts and actions, rather than focusing on theirs.
I began by contemplating on my statement: “After all that I’ve done for them!” Yes, I had given them a lot. However, what stands out here is that little one-letter word: I. And that can mean only one thing: expectations.
Interwoven into what I’d given them was an expectation of return. I expected something from them, even if it was just visiting me in hospital.
“Wow,” I thought. It’s so insignificant, yet it is most significant.
No matter how small an expectation is it’s enough to create ripples of agitation in our mind. Most of us would miss it and suffer from disappointment, but the lesson here is not to overlook expectations. They creep in when we’re not watching.
So for our own wellbeing, we must learn to be aware of the expectations we place on ourselves, on others, and on the world around us; and to minimize them to a point where they are within our control.
What expectations are you placing on yourself, your family, friends and colleagues. Write your answers down. This exercise will reveal things about yourself that you weren’t aware of consciously.
By creating awareness of your expectations you reveal areas in your life where you could improve in order to live a happier, healthier and more peaceful life.
Learn to Give
The next thing I contemplated on was what Zig Ziglar said:
“You can have everything in life that you want, if you just give enough other people what they want.”
What a statement!
What he’s saying here is: we can have everything that we want in life, if we just give other people what they want!
Could it be so simple?
Yes, however there is something very important in this quote, and if we miss it we could suffer great disappointment. It’s all about where we place our focus.
If we focus on “You can have everything in life that you want,” then we could easily fall into the trap of “giving” to others and expecting a return. If this is our motive, then how can we say that we are giving? We’re “giving” only to TAKE!
True giving is accomplished when we give without expectation of return.
If, on the other hand, we focus on giving people what they want, without expectation of return, then we will gain everything that we want—and it will come from the most unexpected sources.
* What do you think? Share your thoughts and stories in the comment section below. See you there?
About the Author
Meredith Forder is the founder and CEO (constant enthusiasm officer) of Clear Thinking, an organization dedicated to helping people take control of their life and realize their true potential. Through Clear Thinking, Meredith teaches people how to discover their purpose and manage their mind, so that they can be less stressed and more productive, resulting in greater success and happiness. You can also find her on facebook.
Related Articles You May Like:
- The Illusion of Control
- How to Change Your Life
- How to Plan the Unexpected
- Discover Your Personal Values
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