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Saturday, June 20, 2015

Undivided attention minus judgment delivers love

Stop craving for attention. Start giving full, undivided attention. In this crucial shift in thought and action lies the secret to bliss.

Picture yourself at home. You have done something nice, maybe made a great meal. Your spouse comes in. Throws her belongings on the carpet, rushes into the kitchen, grabs a juice and some cookies, completely oblivious of the entire spread laid out on the kitchen counter. You are wondering why she is so uncaring. You crave for that “Hey, what’s all that for dinner tonight?” conversation. And then when it doesn’t happen, you sulk. You reply in monosyllables and say good night and go to sleep. What happened there? In your craving for attention, you missed out on giving complete undivided attention to your spouse: maybe she was fatigued after a long day at work or maybe she was unwell or maybe she’s too stressed out. How magical would it have been had you started by asking, “Is there something that I can do for you?” or “Would you like to taste your favorite pasta that I have whipped up with pesto sauce?” The same attitude and approach applies in all situations in Life. At a busy airline counter, you blow your top at an agent who has not looked up at you because she’s perhaps been busy, overworked, or is having a relationship crisis. But you craved for a ‘Good morning there, how can I help you?” and since that didn’t happen, you lost your cool. Another instance: In a meeting to discuss the strategy for your company’s new product, you are fourth in line to make a presentation. But because your CEO is applauding the previous presenter, you have lost your focus and are now worried if your work will be celebrated similarly. In your craving for attention, which breeds anxiety, you lose your flow, stumble through your slides and perhaps even evoke a reprimand from your CEO for poor preparation. And you go back home, behaving like that spouse who grabbed the juice and cookies, missing to notice the great meal spread out awaiting your arrival!

You see how one thing leads to another. The solution is to give complete undivided attention to whatever you are doing. Just that one thing. Nothing else must matter. When you do that, systematically, in each moment, you will become one of the greatest listeners in the world, and you will see only beauty, perfection and joy in everything. All the time. When we are craving for attention, we are really being judgmental. “Oh, he doesn’t care!” This really means you wished he cared. “No. I am not wanted here.” This means you are craving to be wanted. Undivided attention minus judgment, minus the craving, delivers love. And where there is uninterrupted love for whatever you are experiencing: a person, an object, a flow, a situation, you will feel bliss. You will be bliss.

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