Coaches Memo is an area where I share what is going on in my world, the ways in which the power of coaching is affecting my life, and insights I have recently experienced.
Go Ahead, Choose the Best Blueberries and the Best of Life
I just ate the biggest, juiciest best blueberry in the colander. Perfect ripeness, juicy deliciousness, everything you want in blueberries.
This is notable because when I am with my family of choice in San Francisco I rarely, if ever, get “that” blueberry or even any of its close cousins. Nine year-old Ariana LOVES blueberries and with the enthusiasm she the displays for everything she loves and enjoys she pulls the bowl of fresh washed berries over close to her at the breakfast and, berry by berry, finds the best this batch of blueberries has to offer. She revels in each berry, putting one after the other in her mouth alternating hands so she does not miss a berry. Her berry eating pleasure is often accompanied by expressions of joy and delight and letting us know just how much she LOVES blueberries as if we hadn’t noticed. Once she has consumed the best she is done. The bowl is pushed away. She will not eat under-ripe, small or dried up berries.
Occasionally, I wish the sharing lessons would kick in but not this morning. I smile as I realize that she has a skill that we seem to lose as we get older. We “suffer” with a lot of sour, dried up “blueberries” rather than choosing those that we relish. If choices like eating all of the berries -- even those that fail to bring pleasure or enjoyment -- because they are in front of us were only true of blueberries, not a big problem. A little less blueberry pleasure is not a big deal in the whole of a life. Unfortunately we do not limit being “content” with what is in front of us to blueberries. It is a way a being for many of us. We believe we are obligated (sigh with heavy heart) to “take the good with the bad.” In some cases this is true and necessary but certainly not with blueberries and many, many parts of our lives. We choose, or more often than not fail to choose, whatever comes our way when other options are possible. We don’t so much “take the good with the bad” as we let the “bad” roll over us frequently with too little “good” because we fail to choose or make choices that are powerful and pleasurable.
We can reject less than satisfactory choices, just as Ariana chooses only the best most flavorful berries and says “no, thank you” to the rest.
So for today, make choices where you are able, in a way that maximizes your pleasure rather than automatically taking whatever comes. This may be as simple as locating that favorite song or play list for your commute rather than enduring it in silence or with whatever comes on the radio. Look for those experiences and choices that like fat juicy blueberries will add pleasure and enjoyment in larger more important areas of your life.