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Thread: Sit-a-long: Going with the Flow

  1. #1

    Sit-a-long: Going with the Flow

    I enjoyed Jundo's video on "going with the flow." Not resisting old age, your house burning to the ground, etc...

    But, what wasn't discussed (and what I would like to do but need some perspective on this) was going with the flow of your own actions. For example, at work yesterday I sent out some incorrect information that affected hundreds of people in a bad way and I had to scramble to change what I had done and felt like total crap for the rest of the day.

    I need some guidance to see how "going with the flow" applies to your own actions or the consequences of your own actions.

  2. #2

    Re: Sit-a-long: Going with the Flow

    Hi Mushin,

    Oh, this is just old sage advice:

    Accept our human failings and shortcomings, the fact that we sometimes make mistakes ... even as we try to do our best, learn from our mistakes and not make any. That is another example of "acceptance without acceptance". You mother probably told you the same thing!

    But in fact, from one perspective (one of our many perspectives) one CAN'T make a mistake in the universe ... cause it is a "no lose" place.

    Gassho, Jundo (a klutz who is always doing stuff I have to fix)

  3. #3

    Re: Sit-a-long: Going with the Flow

    I believe, and I tell my students, it's not about making a mistake; it's about fixing it if you can, getting better as a result, and how you handle the situation.

    Here's what I do:
    1. I recognize from the get-go that I am going to screw up once in a while, and it will hurt me and probably others when it happens. This knocks me off my perfection horse right off the bat
    2. when that inevitable screw-up happens I say, "Oops, here it is." Then I feel bad about it, just as expected because of #1, but not as bad as I might feel without #1
    3. then, to the best of my ability, I fix it (a little zenny here: I don't TRY to fix it, I just wholeheartedly DO whatever fixing actions I can). While doing this I recognize that I cannot take it back, and I may not be able to make everything all better, but at the very least, I can make the situation somewhat better
    4. I recognize that everyone affected may not be happy with both my screw-up or my fixing, but how they feel is beyond my control
    5. learn from the experience so you do better next time
    6. metta for me and all involved. Actually, metta is in all of these steps.
    7. repeat, because it will happen again

    This whole process is going with the flow. The mistake is thinking your mistake is an outcome. Really, it's just part of the flow.

    I hope this helps.

  4. #4
    Treeleaf Unsui Shugen's Avatar
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    Nov 2007
    Redding California USA

    Re: Sit-a-long: Going with the Flow

    Thanks Alan for the list.

    Thanks Mushin for bringing up the subject.


  5. #5

    Re: Sit-a-long: Going with the Flow

    And I thank the three of you for your comments as well.

  6. #6

    Re: Sit-a-long: Going with the Flow

    You are all welcome. Looking at it today, it is not nearly as step-by-step as I made it look... but I am sure y'all can see that. Being in the counseling and education profession, I get lots of practice with mistakes. It's nice to be able to share some fruits of that practice.

    One more thought: I consider all mistakes to be interpersonal. This is true even if only you are involved, because we (all too often) judge ourselves based on that mistake. I suppose that would technically be intrapersonal, but you get the point, I hope.

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