Thursday, July 30, 2015

Process Over Results

Stress will eventually wear down a body and impair a normally healthy immune system. Because this deterioration is cumulative over time we often choose to ignore it when we find it inconvenient. However, once the damage becomes evident our habits are formed and it is very difficult to change our life style. So begins a cycle of managing the increasing variety of painful and often debilitating symptoms. Yet we need not treat our self in this fashion and we can change our behavior if we wish.

Those of us that are aware of how destructive stress is have made a new start time and time again. But all too often habit wins out over resolve and we are repeating the same behavior that has over time proven harmful for us. One reason for this is that our habits have been with us for a lifetime, they are stronger than our resolve unless we change the life style that continues to empower them. To change the result we must first change the habit and to change the habit we must address the cause.

Stress, anxiety or worry is often the result of our fear of the outcome. We have become so accustomed to focusing on our desired results that we have become wedded to them. Even the possibility that the ends will not mirror our desires causes us stress. Often we use this anxiety to manipulate the results, which in turn causes further physical deterioration. If instead we changed our focus to the process, if what we are doing and how we are doing it dominated our activities, if our heart was invested in the doing instead of the result, we would have little to worry about. Not that we should abandon our desires but we need not give them precedence over the process. We can control the process, we can devote our self to excellence and this is the reason we awoke in flesh and bone this day. It is our attachment to the results that enslave us stealing our heart, clouding our mind and racking our body.

We need not wait another moment. If we wish, we can resolve this minute to devote our heart to process. As human beings, creatures of habit, our focus will inevitably wander  from what is helpful to the one born of habit. As often as our attention drifts from the helpful to the destructive, we can refocus. Over time we will change having gradually formed new habits.  As a result, our body will mend, our heart will become more vital and our soul will become more fulfilled.

Let us this day, resolve to become dedicated to our activities, one at a time, devoted to excellence in what we do. Such devotion is not out of reach and excellence is not inaccessible if we employ it moment by moment and act by act. The only danger we face is losing heart in the battle to change.

May God bless you and awaken in you the joy of being part of the process for which He has breathed life into you.