I Love New York: A Positive Point of View

On a recent trip to NYC, I had breakfast with a colleague who said something that really made me stop and think.

Mike Foster (www.MikeFoster.com) holds the title of the top trainer out of 450 seminar leaders at a major international training organization. He’s a dynamic, sought-after speaker and expert in what he calls e-Savvy—getting the most from your business technology.

In his profession, Mike travels three to four days a week, fifty weeks a year. He practically lives on a plane, and I asked this seasoned traveler what his favorite city was. The way he responded gave me pause.

Mike said he didn’t have a favorite city. He didn’t think it was a good idea to have favorites because that would take away from his enjoyment of the city he was in. “What if I never get back to that city for a couple of years?”

Mike was leaving later that morning for a training assignment in Chicago. He went on to say, “I love New York and I’m getting ready to love Chicago.” Wow!

What a positive way to look at things.

My astute breakfast companion was saying that even preferences can take us out of present time. Making judgments takes away from our enjoyment of where we are now.

It relates to one of the most profound things I’ve ever learned: It’s our resistance to what is that creates our pain. Most, if not all, the emotional pain we experience in our lives is caused by our unwilling-ness to accept what is. Our belief that something isn’t fair or some-how isn’t right causes our upset and creates our pain. Being able to accept the things we cannot change is the only path to peace. And someone with pure acceptance is a rare individual indeed.

Longing to have something other than what we have reduces the value of our current experience. Our energy and resourcefulness is depleted when we pine for where we want to go.

Mike’s philosophy was particularly important to me because, for a variety of reasons, our trip to New York was less than ideal. In fact, it was the worst trip my wife and I have ever taken. It seemed that almost everything that could go wrong did. It took every bit of our positive attitudes to make the best of it.

I wasn’t at a point where I could quite say, “I love New York,” but Mike certainly helped me think about things with a higher perspective than I would have otherwise. I did my best to milk the value from a trip that most would have labeled a disaster.

By not labeling, by not judging—even in little ways—you can enhance your life dramatically. The fact is, you can’t afford to complain about things. When you judge things as bad or wrong and especially when you complain about them, you keep your focus on what you don’t want. And what you focus on expands.

Author's Bio: 

Michael Angier is founder and CIO (Chief Inspiration Officer) of SuccessNet--a support network helping people and businesses grow and prosper. For a free subscription to "SuccessNet Strategies" along with you free copy of "10 Keys to Personal Effectiveness" go to http://SuccessNet.org