I watched a movie awhile ago called "How Do You Know?" It was about a 31 year old baseball player named Lisa who just got cut from the team and 2 men who have become involved in her life. One of the men, Mat, is a pro ball player making 14 million per year and for whom life is an extravagant party. The other man, George, is an honest man who has found himself in the midst of a corporate catastrophe, who has lost everything, and is being forced to make some difficult decisions. All three of them seem pretty lost.
At one point it comes together for George. It's Lisa's birthday and Mat has just given her a very very expensive watch. George gives her a small container of play-doh. And when her quizzical expression meets his excited eyes, he tells her the story of how play doh came to be. After World War II, a grocery store requested that a soap manufacturer create a product that removed coal residue from wallpaper. Noah McVicker concocted a cleaning putty-like substance that would do the trick. However shortly afterwards, there was a switch from coal heating to natural gas, and the product quickly became obsolete. Noah's nephew Joe, discovered that some nursery schools were using the 'putty' to make Christmas ornaments. A minor adjustment - like adding colour- and Play Doh was released. Play Doh was a huge success and the company was saved from bankruptcy. In 2005, Play-Doh was being sold in 75 countries around the world at 95 million cans a year.
"And so" George tells Lisa, "I have kept this can for a long time as proof that we are all just one small adjustment away from making our lives work."
It is a profound realization. It offers tremendous hope and encouragement and inspiration and focus and we need that to keep us from sinking. And it can be exciting. What small adjustment can I make in my life right now?
It is March. Three months after the traditional day of new resolutions to change enduring habits and problems. Lots of people don't bother with resolutions precisely because of the 'enduring' nature of their habits and problems. Our efforts to 'will' and push our way towards a goal doesn't work for most people.
But rather than resolute 'willing', we might keep this question on our fridge. We could ask ourselves every day "what one small adjustment is needed to make my life work?" Perhaps I just need to add a bit of colour? Perhaps I just need to notice what's working in the nursery school? Perhaps I just need to enlarge my mind to more possibilities. Perhaps I need to be open to seeing "Play Doh' rather than 'cleaning product'.
This is so important because our minds are capable of soooo much! When we open and focus our minds towards possibility and inspiration and hope, we are setting ourselves up for seeing so much more than we currently see. We truly have it in us to Live Life Better. However sometimes this is very hard to do on our own because the words "open our minds" and "set up for success' are just a bunch of words. We don't see the possibilities and as such we do not believe they exist I get that. I got stuck there for a awhile too.
If you have trouble with this, if that "one small adjustment" seems elusive, invisible, unreal and impossible... or if you believe that 'play dough' success stories only happen rarely and to other people, then email me.
I can help.