Each morning, we get up – and go through some sort of process to get the day started. Here are five questions to ask yourself daily. These will set the course of your day, and can literally change your life. Self growth, much like Buddhism itself, is a practice. So here are some questions to “practice” with. I’ve included excerpts from the Dhammapada, one of the most widely read and known Buddhist scriptures.
#1. How am I going to positively impact others today?
“Focus not on the rudeness of others, not on what they’ve done or left undone, but on what you have an haven’t done yourself.”
Walk with compassion. Be true to yourself. Keep honesty at the forefront of your mind. Connect. Contribute. Try. If you know you’ve done good, you will feel good. Hold yourself to the highest standard you can.
#2. What will I do to experience joy today?
“Those with initiative, mindful, clean in action, acting with due consideration, heedful, restrained – their glory grows.”
Choose happiness. Create what it is you lack. Do it the honourable way. There is a lot to be said about a “right” and “wrong” way, and most of the time, your gut knows which is which. It’s important to really listen to these instincts.
#3. How will I contribute to my future self today?
“As rain seeps into an ill-thatched hut, so passion, the undeveloped mind.”
Those who know me, hear the phrase “future self” quite a bit. Though I agree that being present is important, as a “Futuristic” thinker I am constantly thinking about what will come next. I’ve learned to bridge the gap between present and future self by being conscious and asking questions like: “Will this contribute to my future self?” “Would my future self approve of this behaviour?” “Is this who I really want to be?” These are key questions to ask yourself.
#4. What should I be thinking about?
“The mind protected brings ease.”
A common theme, we are brought once again to the subject of the mind. You have a true ability to harness your thoughts and focus on the present, the positive, and that which you are thankful for. By doing so, it is possible to attract more of the same goodness to your day. It’s hard not to obsess, cling, and scrutinise everything in our modern world chalk full of technology, social media and beyond. Sometimes you just need to let go, protect yourself and walk with ease.
#5. What if others try to bring me down?
“How very happily we live, free from hostility among those who are hostile.”
This is by far the trickiest topic. It is difficult to remain level-headed, honest, and grounded in light of others you may be surrounded by giving in to their delusions, vices and so forth. Of course, there is a balance in modern life; do things to make you happy, enjoy them and be in the moment, but know your limits and be true to who you are and the future self you want to be.
Finally, I think it’s important to highlight that kindness, compassion and connection to your inward self equates wisdom; not weakness.
Natalie Helen Nucho,
Author Bio: Natalie Helen Nucho is the Founder of Natalie Helen Consulting, Inc., an innovative Management Consulting firm in the United States specialising in mission-critical projects and initiatives to help drive businesses by building impactful companies. Mainly specialising in high-growth technology organisations, Natalie contributes in a wide variety of ways, including Executive Coaching, Talent Acquisition and Training. She is passionate about wellness, health, travel, the outdoors, and especially scuba diving.