Which is more important: the structure of your life or the foundation of who you are? One individual provided an extreme example of why this is important.

A friend/coaching client asked me to help him find his footing about a work-related incident. He works in the mental health field where clients receive whatever assistance they need, as well as guidance to live as independently as possible. A co-worker is away for a while, so my friend and members of his team have each taken on several of her clients.

One of these additional clients received money to make payments, but lost it. My friend shared, “Because he lost the money, this client made a strong departure from the structure by not reaching out to us and tried to kill himself.” He used the word “structure” in several more sentences, primarily because one of many ways they assist clients is to help them create a structured process or routine to follow.

This event, this departure, was what my friend struggled to understand, as well as why this client would choose death over contacting my friend or anyone who could help him. The client told him that when he realized he’d lost the money, he simply fell into a dark vortex he thought there was no way out of. His suicide attempt was his way to stop the pain, the seemingly endless fall.

As my friend spoke, I wrote down what popped into mind: a structure, even a really good one, is not the foundation.

What I offered about this is that a structure can be torn down, redesigned, and rebuilt as many times as someone wishes or needs to do so. And, it’s always built atop the foundation. The stronger the foundation is the sturdier the structure.

The client went to an extreme end of what we might call the Personal Value Gradient. We tend to move around on that gradient or occupy a particular position on it, short- or long-term, as it relates to our experiences (our structure).

The structure in place for the client includes receiving money to pay rent and other monthly expenses and people to contact if any problems come up. This client gave us a clear demonstration, an extreme example, of how beliefs about money having more value than we do can lead us into shadowy or pitch dark inner places.

The structure helps the “wheels” of his life, as it looks, turn; but his ability to know his life has more value than money or any thing ever could, obviously wasn’t in place. This is not to be taken as a criticism towards my friend or the work he and his co-workers do. I know how much my friend cares and does for his clients.

The prevalent “policy” of many cultures, societies, dogmas, and systems is not one that supports our human value above money and stuff. And, there’s a lot of emphasis on what our physical, mental, emotional, professional, financial, and other structures are supposed to look like—with little attention towards how strong our foundation is. What we hear more often is that what we have or can get defines us, establishes our value, rather than, “Be truthful about what you really want to experience, go for it, and allow everything to enhance your experience.”

What if the place of personal empowerment comes from knowing your foundation and that it’s firm—realizing that whether by choice or by what appears as external events, every aspect of your structure experiences ongoing change from the moment you begin your life experience to the moment you depart from it.

The foundation IS you. The structure is like visiting a variety of clothing stores and trying on different styles, colors, and fabrics until you find what suits you best or what you wish to play with a while until you’re ready to try another.

One of the biggest structural flaws in place, and time, is that money defines us, has more value than a human life, instead of that it can be used to enhance our lives.

I’m not going to offer bulleted suggestions for how you can assess and/or reassess your structure and/or your foundation. You are unique. You are the one who knows your foundation better than anyone. You’re the one who can strengthen any weak areas. You’re the one who makes decisions about the structure you place on top of it—what it looks like, how long you keep it, and so on.

The right questions are often the answers. And, sometimes we have to ask for assistance when we feel weak so we can get strong again.

Author's Bio: 

Get quick online coaching, without having to sign up for coaching sessions, with Joyce Shafer, LEC, Live-Answers.com Coach, and author of I Don't Want to be Your Guru, but I Have Something to Say. Learn about You Are More online coaching: 3 levels - Life, Law of Attraction, and Quantum at http://youaremoreempowermentcoach.webs.com ~ Email me at jls1422@yahoo.com to receive my free weekly uplifting newsletter, State of Appreciation. See reviews of my books/e-books online at Lulu.