Animals have a talent for keeping life simple. It’s a perspective we stray from at our peril.
We all sometimes wonder: What if? What if I lived there? What if I lost weight? What if I could do this? What if I stopped doing that? How do I set goals better?
Let’s compare our human perspective to that of other animals on our planet. For instance, what do you think a lizard’s instincts drive him to do or want? Eating? Moving to a warm spot? Nesting?
Are the human vs. animal perspectives that different? If you boil them both down, you could say they are both desires. They are both motives. If we were like a lizard we would just act as we felt we should at the time. We would jump on top of the rock and sit in the sun when we felt cold. We would run when we sensed danger. We would just do what needed to be done and it would be natural to us.
Of course, human life is much more complex. Beyond that, we over-complicate things. I’ll do that when this happens and that happens. I’ll stop my bad habit once this day comes. I’ll do what I really wanted to do after this gets done first.
It’s like looking in the closet for your running shoes, but the closet (your mind) is a mess. You want to go for a run but you can’t find your shoes. Or remember those motor oil commercials that talked about cleaning the “gunk” from your engine to make it run smooth. You can remove the “gunk” from your mind.
Try this! If you close your eyes for two minutes right now and just sit back and take seven slow, deep breaths. Then keep your focus on your breathing. You will discover something. You’ve just brought yourself down to your most primordial need: Breathing!
If you can learn to relax and bring yourself down to the level of the lizard, you will gain immense clarity. As you shut off the pipeline of worries, frustrations and everyday pressures, you automatically get renewed focus on your hopes and dreams. The things that are really important to you become much clearer.
The little things can pile up and become a monkey on our backs that we carry around–not letting us really be who we want to be.
Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs tells us the basic human needs are food and shelter. But there’s a deeper need—a need to express our basic nature, something that is unique to each one of us. If you can tap into this primordial energy you will gain immense personal power in your life to focus and accomplish your goals.
This happens automatically when you keep your mind clean and your life simple. When life gets complicated, remember to relax and start to focus on your breathing. Let all those negative thoughts and worries run off like a refreshing shower running down you back.
Keep things in context. When you want to accomplish a goal, it can be as simple as you want it to be. Visualize your goal. What will your life be like when it happens? How will you feel when you accomplish it? Most importantly, will it become part of who you are? Will it help shape you?
The perspective of keeping things as simple as an animal does will help keep your mind clear and relaxed. It doesn’t have to be complicated.
Think about the Animal Kingdom. Is there an animal, bird or fish that inspires you? What qualities does it represent? When you see one, even in a photograph or on video, does it give you a sense of clarity and energy? In a profound way, this animal is you.
Find an image of this creature and put it where you will see it every day. It will send you a message about the simplicity and strength that all animals have. It is a very real power. We humans have it too, but it can be hidden in our complicated lives.
Next time you are challenged with taking that first step toward a goal, visualize your animal! This will become a powerful visualization—a reminder of the strength and clarity that we all have deep down.
More Insight: Check out this great article on Saucha and the art of self-purification.
Author: David Holt is the Editor-in-Chief for HUM@Nmedia, the parent brand for Silver Magazine. He is an avid writer and outdoorsman and can often be found lake skating in winter and kayaking lakes in summer.