The same robustness that
could break a bond,
could strengthen it,
deepen it, reinvent it
and bind those who felt it.
~David Whyte, excerpt from “True”
Everything is Waiting for You
I ran across this excerpt yesterday when I was searching for pretty much anything by David Whyte. My thoughts immediately turned to the leaders of our country and our world and how they might use their “robustness” to forge bonds and craft solutions instead of using their strength and passion to divide and conquer, to have power over others, or simply to be right.
This principle applies to all of us, of course. We can all choose how we use our energy in any given moment or situation. Do we want to tear down or build up? Do we want to create separation or or connection?
The first step is to become aware of the intentions that underlie our words and our actions; what do we hope to achieve? Will the words that I say result in better understanding or a closer connection with the person to whom I’m speaking? If not, what’s my goal in saying them? Will my actions alienate? If so, what’s my purpose in taking those actions?
In our fast-paced world of texting and tweeting and instant messaging, it’s easy to find ourselves constantly in reactive mode, on automatic pilot. We’re all guilty of speaking without thinking, of doing things without thoroughly considering the consequences. If we can become more mindful of the inner motivations and outer consequences of our interactions, we might make different choices. We might choose to use our “robustness” to strengthen the bonds between us instead of breaking them, and, in the doing, make the world a better place to be.