As some other reviewers have hilariously reported, the author gets a little, shall we say, woo woo in this book. My socks can't be balled up because tAs some other reviewers have hilariously reported, the author gets a little, shall we say, woo woo in this book. My socks can't be balled up because they need to lie flat and rest? Come on. BUT I spent one day applying her basic premise, and filled both of my oversize garbage cans with bags. I need a few days off in a row to take every piece of clothing I own and put it on the floor to sort, and also plan to enlist help with that one so I don't become overwhelmed and decide to just live with clothes mountain. I have read her description of how to fold shirts so that they can be placed in the drawers on edge so that you can see everything you have there instead of just the top pieces. I can't figure out how to do it. Perhaps if I knew how to fold clothes the usual way, that would be a place from which I could start. I would love to hire someone to do it for me. Of course, she would have to come back every week for maintenance. I agree that it would be esthetically pleasing to have all of my drawers arranged this way and also light to dark. I could see myself hyperfocusing on this and agonizing over whether slight variations in color should be in front or back of the other. Who would ever take out a piece of clothing again and destroy the artful display? ...more
I read this book years ago and have recommended it to others over the years. Unfortunately, the people who overstep, intrude and otherwise cross yourI read this book years ago and have recommended it to others over the years. Unfortunately, the people who overstep, intrude and otherwise cross your boundaries are not likely to respect your gentle and firm request to stop doing it and observe a clear boundary. I have found that sometimes relationships need to be more distant to limit the damage the offender can inflict, or be ended. I am now reading his latest book which I find to be more realistic, Necessary Endings. ...more
I am already a fan of exercise and eating right, but reading this helped give me the scientific reasons why this keeps one young. I have noticed thatI am already a fan of exercise and eating right, but reading this helped give me the scientific reasons why this keeps one young. I have noticed that many women are young no matter what their age and others are old in their 30's. I met a woman last week who was 78. She looked around 55. She told me that she got her FIRST tattoo at age 77--it was of a bleeding heart, tattooed on her breast (she showed me!)She did it because she was upset that her boyfriend married someone else. I guess we can stay high schoolers forever if we want to!
Exercise every day, eat right, do lots of fun things and have a good attitude. You're probably going to live a long time so you may as well be healthy for them! Think Jack Lalanne!...more
I have read this book several times over the past few years. The principles are sound but I can't seem to apply them permanently in my own life. My biI have read this book several times over the past few years. The principles are sound but I can't seem to apply them permanently in my own life. My biggest failure would be "time management." I seem to need large blocks of time to daydream and wander the house in my pajamas until around noon. Sadly, I am still not a highly effective person. I tried to get my sons to read this book when they were young and they didn't finish, but my oldest son's boss is making him read it now. It's kind of the Bible of the business world. Maybe I'll read it again and take another stab at it. ...more
To get to the new beginning you need to make the necessary ending first.
I wish I had read the book 20 years ago. He makes the point that in the day-tTo get to the new beginning you need to make the necessary ending first.
I wish I had read the book 20 years ago. He makes the point that in the day-to-day, it isn't too hard to put up with something that is no longer right for us. We make it through one day, then another, and the days turn into years. We have an incredible tolerance for pain, especially if we think it will "get better." So, we tell ourselves little lies like "It will turn around" or "it's not always like this." We numb ourselves as a method of coping. So, here is the part that got to me: "Then, stop the excusing, the medicating, the rationalizing, or any other interference, and project into the future: one month, six months, one year, two years, five years, or more. See yourself at that time having the same discussions you are having now, with no better results. Picture it, feel it, smell it. You already know what it is like, so you don't even have to use your imagination. You are living it right now. I just want you to picture yourself living it for real five years from now. Is that what you want?"
Enjoyed the book and related to the author on many levels. With more spare time I would practice yoga more. Having had to recently take a temporary joEnjoyed the book and related to the author on many levels. With more spare time I would practice yoga more. Having had to recently take a temporary job with a grueling commute, I feel like my life is being sucked away. Quietly going through yoga poses is centering, and also strengthens the core of the body and makes one stand straighter. I don't feel as well when I have not had time for yoga....more
Unfortunately, a busy work schedule left this library book sitting on the nightstand unread through the three weeks before it was due back, and also tUnfortunately, a busy work schedule left this library book sitting on the nightstand unread through the three weeks before it was due back, and also the two week renewal. It is several days late and needs to go back tomorrow. I'll have to check it out again.
I liked that it went beyond the normal "organizing" or "throw it all out" books out there. The first step is to separate out your treasures. Next, you heave the trash. What was different was the step where you envision your life right now and select a theme. Once you have done this, the choices become more clear. For instance, instead of looking at a ton of childrens books and remembering how much I paid for them, I have to recall that they were purchased during a different time in my life (when I had children that age) and do not fit my current lifestyle. Memorabilia for each of my sons, 2 of whom are grown and the last nearly there, can be stored into bins with their names on them, to go off with them eventually. We have heaved so much stuff in the past week, both garbage dumpsters are full for garbage day on Wednesday. We usually fill about 1/4 of one can with a week's garbage. My current life theme is taking shape, something along the lines of "free spirit, writer and fit outdoor type." Holding onto items that served me in the past (but do not fit now) does no good for me or the people who could be using them. She used a great analogy about a Zen master who encountered a river he had to cross so he built himself a sturdy raft. After making it across the river on the raft, he carried it for the rest of his life in case he ever needed it again. He never did, so instead of being helpful the raft was really a burden. If he had put it down and left it by the river, he would have been better off. The more things that go out the door, it seems more time is freed up and life seems more streamlined. The things that are "treasures" can actually be seen and appreciated now. My goal is to free myself from "things" so that I can enjoy my time doing what I want to do in that small window of time when I am not at work. There is nothing worse than coming home tired, but unable to relax and do something enjoyable because there is a mess to deal with and a bunch of clutter all over the place. ...more
Not necessarily only for singles, provides insight into personality and how this is hard-wired into the brain. Just have to integrate this info with tNot necessarily only for singles, provides insight into personality and how this is hard-wired into the brain. Just have to integrate this info with the others, that I am an Explorer/Dictator and also ENTP, a firstborn, a water sign (Pisces) and born in the Chinese year of the Tiger. ;-)...more
At some point today, notice an instance of annoyance or irritation you have with another person or situation. Decide to do the Tao (or practice the WaAt some point today, notice an instance of annoyance or irritation you have with another person or situation. Decide to do the Tao (or practice the Way) in that moment by turning inward with curiosity about where you are on the continuum between desire and allowing. Permit the paradox of wanting the irritant to vanish and allowing it to be what it is.
As I was attempting to read through and absorb this very first lesson, I was given an excellent opportunity to put it into practice. My 13 year old son was thoughtful enough to provide several irritants in quick succession that included complaints, demands, banging on the table with drumsticks, tormenting the cat and then tossing the cat into my office onto the back of my chair, pounding the piano and calling it music, switching to trumpet playing where he snuck up behind me quietly and blasted the trumpet right behind my head, slamming doors, yelling "Mom! Mom!" for no reason, singing off key loudly, and sharing his opinion with me of why he prefers his friend Cole's mother to myself. I attempted to permit the paradox and allow it to be what it is, but I would need several Xanax to pull that off so ended up back where I just wanted the irritant to vanish and called his father to come and get him early. At first the ex said that wasn't possible and I again got to feel annoyance and irritation, but took a few deep breaths, poured some rum into my diet Coke and put on my iPod set to Beth Orton's "Ooh Child." Sure enough, I started to feel better and eventually the ex showed up and they drove off together, leaving me with the peace I sought. On to the 2nd Verse, "Living the Paradoxical Unity." (???)
UPDATE, July 10: I'm really enjoying the book and learning a lot that I can apply to my life. As part of the 24th verse, "Living Without Excess," there is this lovely poem by Hafiz:
Even After All this time The Sun never says to the earth, "You owe Me." Look What happens With a love like that, It lights the Whole Sky.
I finished reading the book all the way through and though I don't take every single verse of the Tao to heart, there is enough good here that I purchased my own copy, since I also had a 40% off coupon and got the paperback. I especially enjoyed the poem above, and this:
Woman With Flower
I wouldn't coax the plant if I were you. Such watchful nurturing may do it harm. Let the soil rest from so much digging and wait until it is dry before you water it. The leaf is inclined to find it's own direction; give it a chance to seek the sunlight for itself.
Much growth is stunted by too careful prodding, too eager tenderness. The things we love we have to learn to leave alone.
There are some good ideas in here for those who want to reduce or manage clutter. I decided to just give away anything that can be used by someone elsThere are some good ideas in here for those who want to reduce or manage clutter. I decided to just give away anything that can be used by someone else that does not bring me delight, and throw the rest out. I don't feel like taking the time to organize it--life is too short and I have books to read!...more