It is what it is…wasn’t it — “reality” revisited

In a prior post, I challenged the sacred adage, “it is what it is”, a comforting and familiar expression that reassures us that reality is solid and immutable… Just as it implies that we cannot change things all that much, and it’s best to just accept our lot. Well I’m not done picking on that idea, not by a long shot. Because I don’t accept any of those premises at all, and I urge you to similiarly refuse to be limited by them.

I dare say that there is a darker side to this seemingly innocuous statement… Isn’t “it is what it is” a bit too much like its evil cousin, “that’s just the way it is”, and their more challenged sibling, “you can’t change the world”. So my challenge with this statement isn’t just aesthetic or based on the physics of the matter (which would, you must admit, but fairly hard to disprove). I have a real beef with the limitations that statement imposes on creative beings.

“Reality” has grown complacent with its comfortable reputation as being, well, real. Many of us already know that reality is as malleable as a child’s first mud pie, as elusive and ethereal as mist on a cold morning. If you didn’t know that yet, you are in for a treat – the world is yours to create as you wish. Really. We’ll begin by looking at how the Distortions, Deletions, and Generalizations can be either a sail or an anchor, depending upon how you use them.

But the first key is to recognize that they are within your control – without that, you will be forced to live life as others have shaped it for you. If you’re perfectly happy in all facets of your existence and see no need to go for more, I respect that, and you can clock out. You’re done. Not just with this site, but with learning and growing in general. Drop me an email though, please, as I have yet to meet the perfect person. I’m quite anxious to do so – assuming such a person really does exist!

When I last picked on the adage “it is what it is”, I had morphed it into “it is what I expect it to be”. Evolution doesn’t sit still, however, and I now suggest that it’s more accurate to say, “It is what it will become, now.” Everything is dynamic, so while mathematically “it”, is “it”, this is trying to describe a dynamic system. “It” won’t be the same thing in ten minutes, and perhaps completely different in a week. Like a single drop of water in a stream. To paraphrase Heraclitus, we can never step into the same river twice, as the river itself is always in flux. That definition is also continually changing, and as our own perceptions change it, (and we can radically influence our own perceptions), we are the ones redefining it.

So we in essence own “it”. We can make of it what we want. So if reality is really in our own hands, that we shape it and alter it like wet, soft clay, why don’t we all enjoy the reality we truly want? Three reasons – first of all, most of us don’t yet know that we can do this, that reality is ours to change. Though second, even once we do embrace this enormous power, we have to learn how to do it, we need a strategy and the skill to use this power with precision. But third, we need to take action, engaging our beliefs, challenging the ones that don’t serve us, amplifying or even creating the ones that do, and using our Distortions, Deletions, and Generalizations in useful, supportive ways – not in ways that limit us.

Therefore it’s like most other things in life, simple, though there’s a lot to it, and as you commit to it, and take action with your mind every day, you will get really good at it. We’ll talk later about the second and third reasons, as they are very important to getting and keeping what you want. However let me leave you with the first, and look now at how the river of your awareness has changed. The river kept flowing, it’s very different than it was even ten minutes ago. So while you previously may not have known the power you have to shape reality, now it is flowing on the waters of that never-ending current, toward you. Notice your power. Embrace it and allow your curiosity and desire to drive you toward using it in every moment.

Your happiness is worth it. And happiness is what it is becoming…yours.

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