Tag Archives: quality world

Seeing connections between having, doing and being

by Barnes Boffey, Ed.D; Director of Training, Aloha Foundation… ww.alohafoundation.org

The thirst inside each us for happiness and peace of mind is not a thirst for things, no matter how spectacular they are, and the benefit of the action we take is not so much in what we do as it is the people we are when we are doing it. One person could give $100 to a charity and it might be an act of amazing generosity; a very well-to-do person might give the same $100 and it would be an act of penny-pinching.

“We can never tell what someone is doing by watching what they are doing,” said Bill Powers, and what he meant is that the being dimension of our actions describes us much more accurately than the doing dimension;  they are inextricably linked.

Once we understand that the ultimate goal of a human being is being human, we can connect the “having” and ‘doing” dimensions of our QW pictures to the “being” dimension and discover how all things and actions are reflections of our being human. The significance and the slaking of our psycho/spiritual thirst is in the “being.” As human beings we are given very general instructions: be loving, powerful, playful and free.  The hard part of being human is figuring out how to “be” those things in a world which most generally offers us choices about what we want to do and have.

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It takes work to keep our eye on the prize, the “being” component, but understanding how it connects with our “having” and “doing” choices is a big step. Some people make the connection by asking, “If I “do this” or “have this,” what does that say about me?” Who am I when I have these possessions and take these actions? We know the answer will be different for each person; Internal Control Theory teaches us that “nothing has meaning until we give it meaning.” Nothing makes us feel that we are a specific kind of person; we are the ones who ultimately make that decision for ourselves. Others can impose their values on our choices, but our mental health and happiness will be the result of the meaning and values we ascribe to our actions and possessions. If we search honestly and openly for the “being dimension” in our possessing and acting, we will ultimately be the creator of our own happiness and the arbiter of whether we are being loving, powerful, playful, and free.

“Would the loving person I say I want to be be doing what I am doing right now?”

“I say I want to be worthy; would a worthy person take the action I am about to take?

“Is buying this hat an act of playfulness or an act of fearing peer pressure?”

“The person I want to be knows that I need to spend more time on my paperwork.

If I don’t make that time, knowing what I know, what kind of person will I be?

We are not human beings having a spiritual experience,
we are spiritual beings having a human experience.

The Many Dimensions of Quality World Pictures

by Barnes Boffey, Ed.D; Director of Training, Aloha Foundation…www.alohafoundation.org

We generally experience our Quality World pictures in only one dimension.  Those dimensions include “things we want to have,”“ things we want to do,” and “things we want to be.” We tend to see these dimensions as separate, but in fact they are all simply partial reflections of multi-dimensional QW pictures whose dimensions exist concurrently all the time.  At all times, our QW pictures have all three of these dimensions — there is a “having” dimension, a “doing” dimension, and a “being” dimension.

Let me explain further. If we perceive one of our Quality World pictures as something we want to “have,” (for example, a new car), we should be aware that in general we want to “have things” because they allow us to do things. Having a car is a possession, but its significance may lie  in the fact  that it allows us to spend less on repairs (doing) or take trips more easily (doing) or be proud of the car we drive (being) or be thrifty by spending less money (being).

Everything we want “to have” gains its important because it allows us to do something; everything we want “to do” gains its importance because it allows us to be something; and everything we want “to be” gains its importance because it allows us to follow our instructions to be loving, powerful, playful and free.  Every Quality World picture exists in these three dimensions at the same time.

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Let’s try another example. Suppose someone tells us they want to “spend more time with their family.” This want presents itself in the “doing” dimension, but also exists as “something we want to have” and “something we want to be.” If we were to ask that person what is important about spending time with their family, they might say, “because it allows me to be a better brother,” or “to be more connected with people I love.” If we want to discover the “having dimension,” we would ask the question, “If you want to spend more time with your family, what would you need to have to do that? They might say, “a better work schedule, (have) and more commitment (have).

If someone says I want to “be more spiritual,” we can explore the “doing dimension” of that QW picture by asking, “If you were being more spiritual, what would you also be doing?”  “Well,” they might say, “I’d be meditating more (doing) and reading the two books I have by my bed” (doing).  To explore the “having dimension” we would then ask, “If you want to do that, what do you need to have to be able to do that?” “More time,” (having), more self-discipline” (having) and “a conversation with my wife.” (the conversation is actually a “have,” going ahead with the conversation is a “do.”)

The significant take away from this piece is that all QW pictures exist concurrently in many dimensions. Why that is important needs to be the next topic we face.

Types of Quality World Pictures

by        Barnes Boffey, Ed.D; Director of Training, Aloha Foundation… www.alohafoundation.org

 

 At this point it will probably be pretty obvious what I mean when I refer to types of Quality World pictures. I think there are two basic types: a) “Pictures of how I want the world to be which will still allow me to be who I am today,” and b) “Pictures of me being the person I want to be (probably involving changing who I am today) when the situation does not match what I want.”

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Based on experiences in our lives, we select from all that we have seen certain of those that represent to us the highest quality that we can imagine at that moment. We choose, both consciously and unconsciously, pictures of people, places, things, activities and qualities which we believe are both our ideals and our best chance of being loving, powerful, playful and free. Implied in these pictures is the basic belief that we can actualize these blueprints without having to change much about who we are.  I call these “Ideal World – Actual Me pictures. Because we live in a world dominated by the thinking of external control psychology, we may also ascribe the things we choose with the supposed power to “make“ us happy. The underlying assumption is that if I can get what I have selected as my ideal pictures, I will definitely be happy. The reality is that no external picture can “make” us happy, but the road we follow to achieve it may lead to our being happy when we get there.

As I have mentioned, we often put too much energy into pictures of the way we want the world to be. If those are the predominant pictures we create, we actually reduce our chances of mental health and happiness. To open the doors to mental health and happiness, we need to have a lot more pictures of us being the people we want to be regardless of whether we get what we want or not. We should develop pictures of both what our ideal job looks like as well as pictures of how we can be happy in a less than ideal job. We can have pictures of the college we want our kids to go to, but we should also have pictures about how to be supportive parents if our children choose another direction. I call these pictures “Actual World – Ideal Me” pictures. If we don’t have them, we get too attached to specific outcomes and we start having to exert varying degrees of control over the people in our lives to guarantee those outcomes; that coercion often leads to the destruction of relationships.

To maintain a healthy balance between both types of pictures, we should constantly be asking ourselves, “What would I ideally like to see happen in this situation?” AND “If I were the person I wanted to be, how I would handle it if this situation does not turn out as I hope it will? We are then free to live our lives without fear of reality… we can imagine being happy with the outcomes we want, and we can imagine being happy if things don’t turn out our way.

The pictures we have; the pictures we need

by Barnes Boffey, Ed.D; Director of Training, Aloha Foundation… www.alohafoundation.org

Change can be very difficult, and one of the greatest assets of Internal Control Psychology, of which Choice Theory is one, is that it points out so many places in the process of behaving that we can impose some degree of control. We can indirectly change our perceptions, our emotions, and our physiology, and we can directly change our action, our thinking and the pictures in our quality world – the primary blueprints of our happiness.

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Most people are pretty clear about the concept of pictures in our quality world; they are the blueprints our brain uses to create our actual behavior. But what may be less obvious is the fact that if we want to change and flourish and be happy as human beings, we will need to add pictures to our quality world which we may not have yet, and which anyone who works with us will need to help us evolve.

Most people are overloaded with pictures of how they want the world to be – their ideal world. These blueprints are certainly worth having, but are only helpful when there is a chance of getting the world to match the pictures we have. The roots of unhappiness are grounded in situations where the world does not match what “we want,” and it is made even worse if the only choice we have is to keep going back to our ideal world pictures. In general, our ideal world pictures involve background thinking which sounds like this: “Here is the way I would like the world to be, and if it is that way it will mean I will not have to change to be happy.” Our biggest problems, however, involve situations where the world is not the way we want it to be and we are therefore forced to change if we are to have a good opportunity to be happy.

In the entries to follow, I will try to explain both the types and the dimensions of quality world pictures that we need to have if we are to maintain flexibility and resiliency in a world which is obviously not at our beck and call.

 

 

Is it “Being Overwhelmed” or “Choosing” to be Overwhelmed?

By Sue Tomaszewski

It’s become an ongoing joke over the last months with me saying that I’ve just been too overwhelmed to write this post on “Being Overwhelmed”.

The more I’ve considered how many times I’ve heard other people reject taking on one more thing due to being too overwhelmed while others do manage to accept the challenge, the more I wonder about Quality World Pictures, Perceived World Information, and Total Behaviors.

I’ve now come to terms with the “choices ” I’ve made. No matter how overwhelmed I perceived myself to be I did choose to devote time to those things that either seemed more “urgent” or perhaps more “need satisfying”:

  • work assignments that had time deadlines with consequences I wasn’t willing to face if not completed.
  • a friend who was very ill and who has since died, whom I wanted to spend time with and support her husband, as well.
  • even being sure I kept up with my “Words with Friends”, Facebook, and email communications.
  • And, hate to admit it, but also making sure I did watch ALL the “Breaking Bad” and “Downton Abby” episodes.

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Yes, my choices to “balance” perceptions of “overwhelmedness” were behaviors that helped me maintain my QW picture of a competent, responsible person who is a devoted friend who enjoys fun and communication with others. Supposing also that even my TV choices reflect more intense story lines, as I am committed to follow-through!

But, please note, my choices were also actions that were already part of my organized behavior system. During this time, I now realize, even when “Words with Friends” was “too challenging”, I would communicate with my “friends” that I was just too busy to play.

My new reflection is that I DID CHOOSE to be overwhelmed and did opt for actions that were, to some extent challenging, but still part of a repertoire of behaviors that I already possessed. I did DID choose NOT to engage in behaviors that I perceived as more demanding, more new, needing more effort.

I am pleased to say , that WRITING, might NOW also be a behavior that has been added as a new organized behavior still developing as I work to continue being simply “whelmed”.

Super Bowl Victory!

By Terri Allen

Saturday evening I returned to my home to Seattle, Washington after attending a business meeting in Texas. There was a general feeling of enthusiasm among the travelers at the departing gate. After all, it was Super Bowl Eve, and we were headed to Seattle, home of the NFC Division Championship Seattle Seahawks!

More than a few of us were sporting Seahawks t-shirts and caps. We passed each other with nods, smiles, and cheers of “Go Hawks!” People who might never speak to each other were greeting one another with warmth and conviviality. We were all part of the 12th Man.

As the time approached to board the plane, the airline attendant asked over the PA, “Any Seahawks fans out there?”  There was an answer of loud cheers from the travelers. The attendant began the pre-boarding process, asking for people traveling with small children to board first, then members of the armed forces, first class passengers and MVP members. Normally what would come next is the general boarding. Instead the attendant invited anyone wearing Seahawks gear to enjoy preferential boarding. Another loud cheer erupted from these privileged passengers!

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Being a Seahawks fan had many advantages that night. I made quick connections with my fellow fan passengers, I got on the plane ahead of people who didn’t wear the preferred gear, and I was generally well received and liked by all of the other Seahawks fans in the terminal and on the plane. You could say that the quality of my world was better on that flight because I was experiencing something important to me, Seahawks enthusiasm, and I was able to share it with other people who were also enthused. It was quite motivating and satisfying.

We all have visions in our minds of what we care about most in life: people, experiences, and things that are meaningful to us. We imagine that the quality of our personal world will improve and we will be happier when we gain access to these visions in reality.  The sum of all of these visions makes up our quality world, and our quality world is at the core of who we are.

Usually the people in our quality world are family and close friends. But that night there were other Seattle Seahawks fans who were in the quality worlds of many other passengers on the flight from San Antonio to Seattle Saturday night.

It was fun to get into a fan mindset by wearing Seahawks gear, visit with like-minded passengers, think about what it would be like if the Hawks won the Super Bowl, and see the green and blue lit Space Needle as the plane descended into Seattle.

Any time we can access in the real world the images in our quality world, like the Seahawks fans on the Seattle flight, our level of mental health and happiness increases. Being with fans wearing their t-shirts, ball caps, green and blue jewelry, and Seahawks manicures enhanced my real life quality world experience.

The poor Denver Broncos fans they are less than happy about their team’s loss. They had a vision of the Broncos winning the Super Bowl and of celebrating their victory. Without the victory, there is a mismatch between what Bronco’s fans wanted from their quality world, and what they got in reality.

Want to increase your own mental health and happiness? Start paying attention to those moments, experiences and times when the visions you have in your quality world match your real work experiences. Get to know your quality world and you will understand what motivates your life.