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Something fun to start your week
This week’s tip involves knobs and buttons.
If you read my newsletter yesterday, you saw that I mentioned cartoonist Nathan Pyle. Well, he posted something recently that got me thinking.
Here it is:
Soon after I saw that comic, I was listening to a meditation in Sam Harris’ Waking Up app, and he said to imagine you have a knob in your brain labeled ‘Patience.’ You can turn that nob up or down, depending on how much patience you need in a given situation.
I like this whole idea of knobs and buttons. And I’ll add another layer: You can imagine a “dashboard” or “control panel” (however you want to think about it) that has an array of buttons and knobs customized to you.
Add whatever mix buttons and knobs you want. Change it up as needed. Maybe you have different control centers for different situations. Or maybe you just go with the idea of one button. Or one knob.
Below is a concept I sketched. Yes, it looks like a toaster. I love toast, so just go with it. (You can imagine your control panel any way you want!)
In this next example, I switched out “patience” with “compassion.” Maybe there’s a situation where it would be more helpful for you to have compassion. I also added a “booster” button. You can use this idea if you need an immediate infusion of something.
You could also add a “Pause” button, and you can mentally push that whenever you need to take a moment to breathe. Or think. Or both.
As you think about the buttons and knobs that might be helpful for you, consider these ideas I had. Feel free to comment and add other ideas, too!
Ideas for buttons you may NOT want to push:
Imagine worst-case scenario
Look for the negative
If you’re heading down a detrimental path with your thoughts, remember that you don’t need to push that button.
Ideas for buttons you might WANT to push:
Look for the good
Pay close attention
Stay in the moment
Ideas for knobs. You can dial these up and down in intensity, as needed.
Compassion for yourself
Compassion for someone else
Looking for the humor
Thinking outside the box
Listening to your intuition
Ideas for boosters. Push these anytime you need an immediate boost of something.
Confidence (or at least the ability to pretend… fake it ‘till you make it)
Again, this can be whatever works for you. Maybe you’re entering a situation where you want to dial up patience and compassion.
Maybe you’re in a situation where you just need to remember to not push this button.
Even just the exercise of thinking through the control panel you want for a given situation is a valuable exercise and will help you prepare for a good outcome. So make this your own! And feel free to add any other thoughts in the comments.
Have a great week ahead!
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