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If you think you’re enlightened, go spend a week with your family.” —Ram Dass

Believe me—Ram Dass, spiritual teacher and author of Be Here Now—knew what he was talking about with that quote. I found that out one summer when part of my family, including my sister and me, met at a vacation rental home on the Jersey shore.


Don’t get me wrong—I never thought I was enlightened, but in my talks and books, I share practices for living happy, so I’m sure it’s equally valid to say, “If you think you’re wise enough to tell other people about habits for living happy, go spend a week with your family.”


Amazing! I really had thought I was mature enough and had been practicing mind-spirit techniques long enough to sail right through, having fun, enjoying the beach, playing with the kids, and being non-judgmental no matter what came up in conversation. Wrong!


Anyway—it rained every day I was there and, long story short, my childish behaviors floated to the surface and bubbled over at the end of my stay. Everything became hunky-dory afterwards for all of us, but I had to take a long, hard look at myself and what’s going on inside me.


I firmly believe that the most important thing for us to do in this life is to manage our inner show. By “inner show” I mean the movie that’s playing in our heads: our state of being, frequency, awareness, consciousness.


We’re all human and we all have stresses and worries and traumas from time to time, but we can handle unexpected, crummy life situations in ways that bring more love into the world, or in ways that fuel rage and joylessness.


It all depends on our choices. So, we need to choose how we want to feel. That doesn’t mean jumping for joy, pretending enthusiasm when you’re feeling down in the dumps. It means not criticizing yourself if you’re letting that story play over and over but acknowledging that you’re doing this. Just becoming aware of what’s going on inside—whether you’re feeling miserable or fabulous—is a giant step in the right direction.


Once you acknowledge what’s playing in your inner show, if it’s toxic, play better-feeling movies gradually and deliberately—and experience the change inside. It’s an unmistakable transformation in energy and vitality.
Next, go for it! Visualize your ultimate desire. Paint a picture in your mind of something that makes your heart roar with sheer delight. Then when love and joy are the main feature in your inner show, go out and share that feeling with other people. Especially your family.


“Si crees que has alcanzado la iluminación, pásate una semana con tu familia.”—Ram Dass

Créeme: Ram Dass, maestro espiritual y autor de Be Here Now, sabía de lo que hablaba con esa cita. Lo descubrí un verano cuando una parte grande de mi familia, incluidas mi hermana, y yo, nos reunimos en una casa de veraneo en la costa de Jersey.


No me interpretes mal: nunca pensé que había alcanzado la iluminación, pero en mis charlas y libros compartía prácticas para vivir feliz, así que estoy segura de que es igualmente válido decir: “Si crees que eres lo suficientemente sabio para hablarle a la gente sobre hábitos para vivir feliz, pásate una semana con tu familia.”


¡Increíble! De veras, yo pensaba que había estado practicando técnicas para la mente y el espíritu por tiempo suficiente como para pasear en bote, divertirme, disfrutar de la playa, jugar con los niños y no juzgar sin importar lo que surgiera en la conversación. ¡Pues no!


De todas maneras…llovió todos los días que estuve allí y, en pocas palabras, mis comportamientos infantiles salieron a la superficie burbujeando al final de mi estadía. Todo se arregló perfectamente al final para todos nosotros, pero tuve que observarme detenidamente a mí misma y a lo que estaba pasando dentro de mí.


Creo firmemente que lo más importante que debemos hacer en esta vida es gestionar nuestro show interno. Cuando hablo de “show interno” me refiero a la película que se está reproduciendo en nuestras cabezas: nuestro estado de ser, frecuencia, reconocimiento y conciencia.


Todos somos humanos y todos tenemos estrés, preocupaciones y traumas de vez en cuando, pero podemos manejar situaciones de vida inesperadas y horribles de maneras que traigan más amor al mundo o de maneras que alimenten la rabia y la tristeza.


Todo depende de nuestras elecciones. Entonces, debemos elegir cómo queremos sentirnos. Esto no significa saltar de alegría o pretender entusiasmo cuando te sientes deprimido. Significa no criticarse a uno mismo si deja que la historia se repita una y otra vez, pero reconocer que lo está haciendo. El simple hecho de ser consciente de lo que sucede en el interior de la persona, ya sea terrible o fabuloso, es un gran paso en la dirección correcta.


Una vez que reconoces lo que se está reproduciendo en tu show interno, si es tóxico, reproduce películas que se sientan mejor, de manera gradual y deliberada— y experimenta el cambio interior. Es una transformación inconfundible de energía y vitalidad.


Ahora, ¡adelante! Visualiza tu mayor deseo. Pinta una imagen en tu mente de algo que haga cantar a tu corazón de puro deleite. Luego, cuando el amor y la alegría sean la característica principal de tu show interno, sal y comparte ese sentimiento con otras personas. Especialmente con tu familia.


Traducción de Teresa Dovalpage

Author

  • Ellen Wood, born in 1936, is a prizewinning author, columnist and former management executive. After her youngest child began school, Ellen started an in-house ad agency and won 16 awards for annual report and advertising excellence, including 4 national awards. Five years after her mother died of Alzheimer’s, Ellen experienced early symptoms (she has the gene, APO-e4). At 68 she developed a program of mind/body/spirit techniques that proved so successful, she wrote and published “Think and Grow Young,” followed by “Joy! Joy! Joy!” (now retitled “The Secret Method for Growing Younger,” Volumes 1 and 2) and gave inspirational speeches. Since 2018 Ellen has been the ad agency for NorthStar Tire and Auto in Questa, NM. Ellen started painting in November of 2020, having dabbled at it in her 20s, and gave herself a new name: Maruška, her father’s middle name. She is overjoyed to be part of a big, loving, kindhearted family. You can find her paintings at www.northernnewmexicoartists.com/ellen-wood

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